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    With all the negative press being given to, ahem, certain football stars, it's refreshing to hear about a sports hero who doesn't take himself so seriously and actually seems like a guy you'd love to know.

    Los Angeles Lakers guard Jeremy Lin is that guy. The 26-year-old Harvard grad and NBA favorite was recently honored by Madame Tussauds wax museum in San Francisco, which erected an (obviously) super-tall wax statue that looks a heck of a lot like him. So much like him, in fact, that Lin saw the chance to play a hilarious prank on innocent fans -- and even his own mom and uncle -- and, like a true basketball star, took the ball and ran with it.

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    The women sitting next to me are immersed in an animated conversation. I'm not trying to eavesdrop, but, well, they're right there, it's hard not to overhear. Not that they're talking about anything super personal, they veer from mom-topic to mom-topic: how the swimming lessons are going, what their kids' teachers are like, their plans for the summer. Although they seem to have met each other only moments before, these women have the semi-tentative yet excitable air of two people with a great deal in common. Like people on a second or third date.

    I'm shifting in my seat, eyes scanning the pool to find my kids. There's Dylan, happily dunking his head. There's Riley, shivering but determined on the diving board. I have the sense I've been here a hundred times before: the uncomfortable bench, the sneaking glances at my watch, the shrinking -- yet painfully conspicuous! -- feeling of being excluded.

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    At one point or another, most of us have heard someone say that all so-and-so needs is a "kick in the pants" to get him to do something. Yeah, not so effective when the person you're trying to motivate is 6 years old AND you deliver him an actual swift kick in the pants.

    One Florida dad clearly doesn't agree. The man, whose name has not been released, was caught on video pushing his young son down a skateboard ramp in an effort to -- I'm guessing -- force the child to face his fears. His actions angered families at the park and he has been temporarily banned from visiting the skateboarding facility. On a more serious note, the Florida Department of Children and Families is investigating to determine whether there's more to this story.

    Is dad simply administering some good, old-fashioned tough love, or did he take things too far?

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    The following post is from our sponsor, Proctor & Gamble.

    Tough is a great word, unless of course you’re referring to steaks or bullies. When I hear the word tough, it conjures up images of superhuman strength, unshakable fortitude, and quiet courage. I see mothers who are strong in their convictions, strong in their character, and strong in their actions. And it’s all in the best interest of their children.

    It’s rarely the easy way, but the tough way is so often what makes a difference in the long run ...

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    This is a post from our sponsor, Proctor & Gamble.

    I have sat on the bleachers through thousands of my three children’s sporting events. Baseball, football, basketball, cheerleading, you name it, I was there. I cheered, I cringed, I cried. My kids won tournaments and championships and traveled around the country on their elite teams. It all panned out for them in college; my son played football, my daughter was a competitive cheerleader, and my youngest will be playing baseball next year at a Division 1 school.

    No one could have been more supportive than I was. I drove them to games and practices and workouts. I bought them fancy equipment and sports drinks and reusable ice packs. I feel like no one could have done more. And then I watch the Olympics.

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    This is a post from our sponsor, Proctor & Gamble.

    The first time they put my little 9-year-old girl in as goalie in her recreational soccer team, my heart sank. Goalie is something of a lose-lose position, particularly for a newbie. Stop all the balls and the best you get is a game full of stress. Miss a few and you’re responsible for losing the game. When her team lost during her first time in the goal, I had a sad little girl on my hands. “I was so bad at it, Mommy,” she said. Then she asked me a question that I’ll always remember. “Do you think I can do it?”

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    When tuning in to the Opening Ceremonies for the Sochi Winter Olympics, Bob Costas popped up on my screen as the main correspondent, sporting a pair of hilariously dorky glasses and an extremely red eye. My first thought wasn't, Oh, good to see they're tackling the controversial political issues about why they're hosting in Sochi or Why am I watching Maria Sharapova when she's a tennis star, which has absolutely nothing to do with winter sports? Nope, besides being annoyed by a frustratingly slow start, my first thought was, I can't wait to see how the Internet responds to Bob Costas' eye.

    And respond they did. Everyone's immediate thought was that Bob had pink eye, but usually that could be cured in a few days with some antibiotics. But the infection spread -- and was getting worse. Finally, NBC had no choice but to replace Bob with Matt Lauer. Seems his evil eye was scaring all the kittehs and little children out there tuning in to the Olympics.

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    She should be making headlines for her fantastic figure skating at the Sochi Olympics, but instead, Ashley Wagner is causing a media frenzy because of her animated reaction to her lower than expected scores.

    Remember McKayla Maroney? Yeah, Ashley's officially become that girl -- and the internet is having a field day with her.

    Although she did help the US team advance to the next event, the figure skater became visibily angry when she ended up with a score of 63.10 which landed her in fourth place. Let's just say she's really, really bad at hiding her feelings.

    Watch the infamous moment below:

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    OMG you guys, did you hear about the Red Hot Chili Peppers? They totally just admitted that their Super Bowl XLVIII halftime performance was FAKE. As in, their guitars weren't even plugged IN. I can't believe it! Is nothing sacred? What gives these so-called "musicians" the right to play in front of a record 115.3 million viewers when all they're doing is PRETENDING? This is the worst news I've heard since Hostess announced their bankruptcy! I DEMAND PREDICTABILITY IN LIFE AND THAT INCLUDES LIVE PERFORMANCES AND A PLENTIFUL SUPPLY OF TWINKIES.

    Okay, I'm kidding. I truly couldn't care less that the Red Hot Chili Peppers' performance was pre-recorded, particularly when 1) you read their actual statement about the band's decision, and 2) you consider the FAR more egregious acts of lip-syncing that have gone down elsewhere in entertainment history.

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    Gather 'round, young people, and let the crotchety old Stir writer tell you a wild and exotic tale from long ago ... when Super Bowl commercials actually aired during the game, and not a minute beforehand. Why, we had to wait through hours of football to see all the ads! Uphill, both ways, in the snow! Now you whippersnappers can see the newfangled branding campaigns on the interwebs with just a click of your thingamamouse -- like, for instance, Ellen DeGeneres’s awesome fairytale-themed spot for Beats Music.

    Considering the astronomical cost of airing a commercial during the Super Bowl, I'm not surprised companies have been gearing up by promoting their ... uh, promotions. And if anyone can make an ad fun to watch, it's Ellen, who shared the clip on her talk show today. In it, she plays a sort of hipster Goldilocks who samples the Three Bears' music, and -- well, it's hard to explain, but it's very cute.

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