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Charles Blondin’s Sunday News and Views



Earlier this week, Nik Wallenda made headlines for crossing the Grand Canyon (a distance of about a quarter mile) on a tightrope, wavering precariously on a wire 1,500 feet above the canyon’s bottom. If your memory can stretch back to around this time last year, however, you’ll recall that Wallenda also walked on a tightrope directly over Niagra Falls last year- a feat first made popular by Charles Blond. Blondin was the first person to ever walk across Niagra Falls on a tightrope on June 30, 1859, and he went on to traverse the distance many more times afterwards. But don’t go thinking he just casually strolled across the Falls each time he attempted the feat- that would have been way too boring for Blondin, who began practicing tightrope in his backyard at age five. No, instead, Blondin always gave a little twist to his signature routine. Once he crossed while pushing a wheelbarrow; another time he carried a manager on his back (how the manager agreed to do that, I have no idea). He crossed the falls on stilts. He balanced a chair on the rope and stood on that. Just in case blind people weren’t impressed, he  crossed with a piece of cloth tied over his eyes.  One time Blondin balanced a stove on his back and cooked an omelet in the middle of the rope- AND THEN ATE IT. All while For his death-defying heroics, he earned $500 an appearance. Nik, good on ya, but I’ve gotta go Mikayla Maroney here- not impressed. At least not until you make some flapjacks in the middle of the canyon. Tonight’s News and Views are in honor of The Great Blondin. Kids, don’t try this at home.


-You know it’s a slow news day when we’re all tweeting about Coach Cal at the Kentucky speedway. As ridiculous as his jacket looks, I can’t help but hope that he’ll be inspired to bring back starter jackets for the team this year. The big guy was set to have himself a great time, driving the pace car at 45 mph- but unfortunately the event was postponed until noon Sunday because of rain. Calipari will just have to wait to be a role model for all of us who didn’t get to go to Safety City as second graders in Kentucky.

-As always, Coach Cal brought the sound bites. Regarding Nerlens Noel’s slip in the draft, Calipari added some perspective by saying “I wish he would have gone number one, but number six is fine. He’s going to have to prove himself anyway.” Cal also said he was in contact with Wiltjer via text to keep up with his transfer plans.

-Have you heard the rumblings of a potential 2010 vs 2012 matchup in the UK men’s basketball alumni game? Yes? Another player is thinking about joining- Daniel Orton. It would be his first return to Lexington since he was drafted. Hey, the more, the merrier.

-As for the future of Kentucky basketball, point guard Josh Perkins will announce August 25th after visiting Kentucky and UConn, according to Zags Blog.  Perkins is the #28 player according to Rivals in the class of 2014; an offer has yet to come from Kentucky, but his father says “It’s a kid’s dream to play for Coach Calipari and play for Kentucky. However, if or when the offer comes, he won’t make a decision until the dust settles.” Perkins is also considering UConn, Minnesota, Gonzaga, UCLA, and USC.

-How is Kentucky’s athletic department keeping busy this summer? By interviewing various coaches on the football team, of course. Check out Erik Korem (Director of High Performance- not a tightrope reference, I asked) and Vince Marrow (Tight End Coach and Head Poobah of Ohio Recruiting).

-5Dimes, an online sports book, isn’t chugging the Mark Stoops Kool-Aid yet. The site released their predicted win totals for all college football teams today, and Kentucky’s over/under was set at 3.5. All of the team predictions can be found here. As always, bet responsibly, and draw the line when you find yourself putting your toddler’s Barbie playhouse at stake.

-A former Kentucky football commitment chose the Cardinals today. James Hearns, a four star linebacker, announced today that he will play at Louisville. He had originally committed to Florida, then Kentucky after Stoops was hired; however, academic concerns prevented him from signing with the Cats.

-Speaking of commitments, Nigel Bethel, a three star cornerback from Miami in the class of 2014, will be announcing his college decision on July 8th. His top six are Florida State, Miami, Kentucky, Tennessee, West Virginia, and Texas Tech. Come play Yahtzee, Nigel.

-It’s no secret that Kentucky football has been racking up some great PR lately, but the athletics department is taking that one step further by purchasing ads in Sports Illustrated, The Week, and Time. 

Screen Shot 2013-06-29 at 7.28.28 PM


Yeah, those “#YAHTZEE!” calls read like an alarm clock to me too.

-If you enjoy the feeling of your head spinning, or love watching grown men fight over twenty-something athletes, then you may enjoy these NBA trade rumors: the Dallas Mavericks are reportedly interested in Rajon Rondo, while the Toronto Raptors are throwing their hat in the ring for Eric Bledsoe. Just a couple things to keep an eye on. When all is said in done, will Boston have ANY players besides Big Baby and Kelly Olynyk?

-In troubling SEC news, four Vanderbilt football players have been kicked off the team and banned from campus in the aftermath of a Metro police sex crimes investigation. Details of what exactly the police are investigating are still unclear, but this is sure to be headline news across the country.

-Did you wake up this morning thinking, “Self, I wonder when Rick Pitino is going to write another book? I’d really love a behind-the-scenes take on his first tattoo!” If so, you’re in luck! Rick is tentatively set to write a book commemorating his epic year by this October. The working title? “The One-Day Contract: How to Add Value to Every Minute of Your Life.”


I can think of one minute of his life that cost him a LOT of value.




Article written by Kristen Geil

30 Comments for Charles Blondin’s Sunday News and Views

  1. @googlyi
    10:43 pm June 29, 2013 Permalink

    Am I the only one that thinks Nik Wallenda could be a long lost brother of Mark Stoops?

  2. TheTruth
    10:43 pm June 29, 2013 Permalink

    Big Baby doesn’t play for the Celtics

  3. Experienced
    10:45 pm June 29, 2013 Permalink

    That UK ad is fuggin’ BADASS. No if, ands or buts about it.

  4. Will
    10:58 pm June 29, 2013 Permalink

    It was only like 8 seconds right?

  5. Merlin's
    11:01 pm June 29, 2013 Permalink

    The celtics should not trade Rondo. Also how do you win .5 of a game? Jk. I’ll take 4wins this season

  6. Rei
    11:10 pm June 29, 2013 Permalink

    the Vandy game just got easier.

  7. UKBlue
    11:14 pm June 29, 2013 Permalink

    Rick book should be entitled: How to add more then 15 seconds to your sex life. Rick is truly a narcissistic megalomaniac pathological lying cliche. Rick should just come out & say the truth: don’t expect me to get close to winning another championship, we got lucky & it took a really bad year in college basketball for us to win.

    We need to get prepared, we have the hardest schedule, this football is going to be ugly this season.

  8. Yeezus
    11:18 pm June 29, 2013 Permalink

    Dude, i bleed blue all day, but Daniel Orton’s weak…anybody disagree with me?

    11:32 pm June 29, 2013 Permalink

    I believe Pitino’s book is already back from the editor. He is is writing it with Eric Crawford. Much better to choose Eric than his buddy Paula Dean.

  10. Kevin C.
    11:52 pm June 29, 2013 Permalink

    I’d never heard of Charles Blondin. Now that I know what Blondin accomplished, I can legitimately say that Nick Wallenda is a wuss, and highly overrated.

  11. TIME
    12:03 am June 30, 2013 Permalink

    Loved seeing that ad in my Time mag. Stoops gets it. Time to put Big Blue Nation on the map in football

  12. Big Baby
    12:12 am June 30, 2013 Permalink

    Orlando Magic

  13. Yeah
    12:14 am June 30, 2013 Permalink

    Nigel Bethel is a 4* on rivals.

  14. UK
    12:40 am June 30, 2013 Permalink

    7) Some of those words are entirely too big and difficult for the Louisville trolls to understand. Bravo

  15. El Guapo
    2:39 am June 30, 2013 Permalink

    Love that some dude couldn’t sign with UK because of academic issues, but UofL has noooooo problem welcoming him in with open arms. Standards must be a litttttle bit lower down 64.

  16. Just to help #7's syntax
    2:41 am June 30, 2013 Permalink

    It’s cute when stupid people try to use big words. Here is #7’s first line written correctly. Notice the silly errors. RICK’S (possessive form not Rick) book should be entitled: How to add more THAN (not then Than is an expression of comparison while then is one of time.) 15 seconds to your sex life. Rick is truly a narcissistic MEGALOMANIACAL (need the adjective form) PATHOLOGICALLY (adverb form) lying cliché. Keep it classy and poorly written BBN.

  17. Smartass
    3:15 am June 30, 2013 Permalink

    18) what do you think your presence and stance here indicates about you? No one hears your words they merely see past to what you supposedly are defending and in this case it seems to be your shrinking willy when feeling disrespect from an entity your not a part of, this justifying how little you’re perceived. Your presence here is merely a blimp, and your existence as short witted and useless as you seem. You Louisville fans are all the same and its how you act that makes you the little sibling of Kentucky. Got more respect for fanbase of EKU and Murray than your flakey tweaky insecure brethren. Act stronger cause whether we like it or not Louisville (the city) is the face of Kentucky so y’all got to man up.

  18. O T I S
    4:00 am June 30, 2013 Permalink

    Cal’s book is called “Even if you end up in the NIT, you could still be drafted in the first round. An unauthorized biography of Drew Franklin.”
    It profiles a slow-witted imbecile who runs a website

  19. For smartass's benefit
    4:04 am June 30, 2013 Permalink

    *What do you think your presence and stance here INDICATE * not INDICATES because presence and stance are two things thus requiring a plural verb form. Nice try, though.

  20. El Guapo
    5:43 am June 30, 2013 Permalink

    Um, #19…telling someone his presence here is a “blimp” implies it is a large, floating airship that everyone can see. I think “blip” probably would be better diction next time. Knowing is half the battle.

  21. Puhleeze
    6:23 am June 30, 2013 Permalink

    @El Guapo – academic entry standards are virtually identical at UofL and UK. If Hearns qualified at Louisville, he could qualify for Kentucky. Nice try, though.

  22. -__________-
    6:53 am June 30, 2013 Permalink

    Big Baby hasn’t been on the Celtics for like 3 years. I’ve lately started to tolerate girls talking about sports but I will never tolerate girls talking about sports who don’t watch sports. KSR is the best spot for UK stuff but the lack of competition leads to their acceptance of mediocrity.

  23. Wiki
    7:43 am June 30, 2013 Permalink

    Blondin actually lowered the omelette down to passengers on the Maid of the Mist who ate it

  24. Cats in the NBA
    8:26 am June 30, 2013 Permalink

    I am just imagining what that ad would have looked like if Joker had designed it in Photoshop.

  25. John
    11:15 am June 30, 2013 Permalink

    Big Baby hasn’t played for the Celtics in like 3-4 years! LOL

  26. Merely a Blimp
    11:40 am June 30, 2013 Permalink

    I understand the Big Baby comment was a mistake, but she publishes many articles a week, and I’m guessing KSR’s shoestring budget doesn’t include a fact checking department. Consider how many things major news sources get wrong all the time with a team of fact checkers at their disposal. Lay off. P.S. I am the guy correcting ignorant and hateful fans’ grammar and will continue to do so.

  27. WeAreAllCritics
    12:23 pm June 30, 2013 Permalink

    While we’re at it in policing —— It’s — Niagara,,,,,,not Niagra.

  28. -_______-
    12:43 pm June 30, 2013 Permalink

    It’s not about fact checking…if you write about SPORTS you should know about SPORTS! You shouldn’t need to fact check common knowledge.