This story comes straight from the “There’s no way this is going to last” file, but there’s a particular Olympian who is scheduled to appear at a handful of motivational speaking gigs in California later this month. And, as you might guess (since you’re reading it here, after all), that particular Olympian has earned himself a bit of criticism for toking away on some old school marijuana.
Yup, by now you guessed it: Bongtastic Michael Phelps is going to give speeches to burgeoning capitalists in Sacramento, San Francisco, San Jose and Oakland in late February — his first Sacramento date is Feb. 24 — and March. A company called Get Motivated! is responsible for the business seminar where Phelps and a host of others will speak, which begs the question: What does Phelps know about business except that money flocks to him when he wins? That’s all he’s got to go on, right?
While Phelps has plenty of gold on his resume, his recent brush with drug infamy seems particularly poignant in the medical marijuana hotbed of Nor Cal, particularly when you contrast his background with some of the event’s other speakers; former general and Secretary of Defense Colin Powell, former New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani and self-made billionaire Steve Forbes.
(In retrospect, his fascination with that photo makes a lot more sense now.)
In fact, Phelps can’t even catch up with some of the seminars’ other athletes. For instance, guess who’s appearing in Honolulu? Eli Manning and Kurt Warner! Now those guys have stories that might resonate, at least until Eli gets caught driving drunk … or smoking weed of his own.
There’s no word on what Phelps’ speech will sound like, but one SAN JOSE MERCURY NEWS writer took a crack at it. And the seminar hasn’t exactly taken its foot off the Phelps pedal since his arrest, sticking with the full-page Phelps ad that pimps the swimmer as someone who can teach already successful businessmen/women how to “sharpen their competitive edge.”
Isn’t that exactly the opposite of what Phelps’ has been medicating himself to take care of? Seems counterintuitive to us.
The bigger question is whether Phelps addresses the arrest at all in his speech. If he doesn’t, it’ll be pretty hard to take him seriously (in fairness, it’s pretty hard to take the concept of Phelps teaching regular Joe Schmoes how to compete, anyway). And if he does? Well, let’s hope he has a better sense of humor than he showed on SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE. Otherwise that is going to be one awkward oversold auditorium.