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(Newsweek)   From Olympic gold medalist to "Brother, can you spare a dime?" No, it's not Michael Phelps   (newsweek.com) divider line 41
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6307 clicks; posted to Sports » on 16 Mar 2009 at 1:10 PM (6 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



41 Comments   (+0 »)
   

Archived thread
 
2009-03-16 10:11:58 AM  
This guy is nothing but a big crybaby. With all of the unemployment going on, he (and his agent) are turning down $200K per year??

FTFA: Without a sponsorship, Lezak has to pay for his own swimsuits, which cost $550 for a top model; he could use an old one, but that's like bringing a wooden racket to Wimbledon. And anyway, which old suit? He doesn't feel comfortable wearing his Team USA suit to a local meet, where he's swimming for himself. If he doesn't have a sponsor in time for the world-championship trials this summer, he might have to swallow his pride and call a friend with a Speedo deal to ask if he can borrow one.

Boo-hoo. Get a job!

Another tear jerking line from the article: "Lezak had hoped his golden sprint would make him immune to cutbacks. He earns $10,000 to $20,000 for motivational speeches, but after four bookings in January, he had only one in February."

Assuming he earned the minimum of $10K per speech, that would mean he earned $60K in two months. Seems like most could live on that. This guy's a waste and needs to see what real people have to do to earn a living.

No sympathy here.
 
2009-03-16 10:32:47 AM  
I agree.

He needs to get a job and STFU.
 
2009-03-16 10:42:14 AM  
According to Wikipedia, his name "means lounge/lawn chair in Polish". (I'm not making that up.) That seems like a natural fit for an endorsement. Has he explored the foreign market?
 
2009-03-16 10:54:13 AM  
superdolfan1: Assuming he earned the minimum of $10K per speech, that would mean he earned $60K in two months

Tough life.

Go cry, (non)speedo-boy
 
2009-03-16 12:28:01 PM  
Without this guy Phelps wouldn't have the record, he should probably help him out.
 
2009-03-16 12:35:06 PM  
img440.imageshack.us

Pardon me, but could you spare a high-tech swimsuit for a fellow American who's down on his luck?
 
2009-03-16 12:39:51 PM  
IAmRight: Without this guy Phelps wouldn't have the record, he should probably help him out.

Agreed.

i80.photobucket.com
 
2009-03-16 01:18:35 PM  
Hey subby, Bravo. Apparantly no one else got it.
 
2009-03-16 01:38:54 PM  
Shirley Ujest: He needs to get a job and STFU.

A sponsorship is money given in exchange for work. Sounds like a job to me.
 
2009-03-16 01:44:10 PM  
superdolfan1:
No sympathy here.


Did you bother to read the article? He has to make enough money in order to support his family for the years that come after his career is over.

All of you idiots saying "he should just get a job" are ignoring the fact that this IS his job. What would you have him do? We're talking ten years or more of time he'll have to have support while he works his way into a private life -- it's not like there are jobs willing to hire people with no experience for decent pay right now.

There are a farkton of idiots in these fark threads telling people to "get a job" who are completely oblivious to the fact that THERE ARE NO farkING JOBS OUT THERE RIGHT NOW.
 
2009-03-16 01:48:35 PM  
bubbaprog: There are a farkton of idiots in these fark threads telling people to "get a job" who are completely oblivious to the fact that THERE ARE NO farkING JOBS OUT THERE RIGHT NOW.

Maybe there's an aquarium looking for a new attraction...
 
2009-03-16 01:55:15 PM  
bubbaprog
superdolfan1:
No sympathy here.

Did you bother to read the article? He has to make enough money in order to support his family for the years that come after his career is over.

All of you idiots saying "he should just get a job" are ignoring the fact that this IS his job. What would you have him do? We're talking ten years or more of time he'll have to have support while he works his way into a private life -- it's not like there are jobs willing to hire people with no experience for decent pay right now.

There are a farkton of idiots in these fark threads telling people to "get a job" who are completely oblivious to the fact that THERE ARE NO farkING JOBS OUT THERE RIGHT NOW.


Did he expect us to buy enough Wheaties and Speedos based on his endorsements to have him rolling in residuals forever? Maybe he should have done more in college than swim. Athletes who expect us to buy the products they endorse just because they endorse them are stupid. And, yes, get a job. Or at least plan for the future beyond the next cereal box cover.
 
2009-03-16 01:55:34 PM  
IXI Jim IXI: bubbaprog: There are a farkton of idiots in these fark threads telling people to "get a job" who are completely oblivious to the fact that THERE ARE NO farkING JOBS OUT THERE RIGHT NOW.

Maybe there's an aquarium looking for a new attraction...


Sea World is full up

http://www.theonion.com/content/news/michael_phelps_returns_to_his_tank (new window)
 
2009-03-16 01:56:41 PM  
I bet Home Depot has a job for him
 
2009-03-16 01:59:17 PM  
Tresser: Sea World is full up

http://www.theonion.com/content/news/michael_phelps_returns_to_his_tank (new window)


LOL! I'm so happy that their quality has improved again.
 
2009-03-16 02:11:41 PM  
Olympians give up their prime years in service of their country and get very little, during this time they usually forgo a complete eduction because of the demands of their discipline.

Congressmen, after usually successful business/lawyer careers that provide them with a cash base, give up some latter years and get a full state/federal pension.

I think there is an unfair disparity here. The least the state can do is provide a full ride somewhere to finish a formal education without the distraction of an olympic sport on their studies. Give them deferred loans to cover costs, like most students get.
 
2009-03-16 02:18:40 PM  
Is there a video anywhere of that 4x100 race? I've been looking around and can't find it.
 
2009-03-16 02:19:52 PM  
superdolfan1: Assuming he earned the minimum of $10K per speech, that would mean he earned $60K in two months. Seems like most could live on that. This guy's a waste and needs to see what real people have to do to earn a living

Plus this: "Lezak's monthly stipend from Team USA, his only regular income right now, is just $1,750"

And his wife works. How are they managing to scrape by on that?
 
2009-03-16 02:27:17 PM  
StRalphTheLiar: superdolfan1: Assuming he earned the minimum of $10K per speech, that would mean he earned $60K in two months. Seems like most could live on that. This guy's a waste and needs to see what real people have to do to earn a living

Plus this: "Lezak's monthly stipend from Team USA, his only regular income right now, is just $1,750"

And his wife works. How are they managing to scrape by on that?


That comes out to 21k, and his wife(mentioned as a nurse) probably makes 40-60k. 60k-80k before tax isnt much in southern california, and thats not including fees for facilities, travel, supplies, and nutritional supplements/diet for a high performance athlete that still has desire to compete in one more olympic games
 
2009-03-16 02:32:21 PM  
img1.picturewizard.com
 
2009-03-16 02:44:03 PM  
bhcompy: That comes out to 21k, and his wife(mentioned as a nurse) probably makes 40-60k. 60k-80k before tax isnt much in southern california, and thats not including fees for facilities, travel, supplies, and nutritional supplements/diet for a high performance athlete that still has desire to compete in one more olympic games

That plus the $50k minimum he has already made this year from speaking is a lot more than most people make. Olympic athletes need to be aware that they will not be making a lifetime's earnings while they are still in their prime, so they need to have a "life-after-athletics" plan.

Put another way, how are his troubles any bigger than a typical small business owner? Let's compare:

-"Lezak-like most pro athletes-needs the money he makes now to carry him for a while"
-"He can't enter the work force in his mid-30s with nothing in savings"
-"About half his annual haul gets plowed into expenses: taxes, equipment, travel"
-"They must train up to three times a day, 11 months a year"


Check, check, check, and check. Millions of Americans deal with the same issues in their chosen professions every day.
 
2009-03-16 03:02:36 PM  
bhcompy:

That comes out to 21k, and his wife(mentioned as a nurse) probably makes 40-60k. 60k-80k before tax isnt much in southern california, and thats not including fees for facilities, travel, supplies, and nutritional supplements/diet for a high performance athlete that still has desire to compete in one more olympic games


Pools and gyms exist outside of Southern California.

Plus it said his condo is 1k/month so his mortgage is low for that area.

Sorry that he chose to not get finish his education (could have gone with distance learning while he traveled), or put money away for a time like this, but yeah its called life and sometimes it blows.
 
2009-03-16 03:08:49 PM  
DoBeDoBeDo: bhcompy:

That comes out to 21k, and his wife(mentioned as a nurse) probably makes 40-60k. 60k-80k before tax isnt much in southern california, and thats not including fees for facilities, travel, supplies, and nutritional supplements/diet for a high performance athlete that still has desire to compete in one more olympic games

Pools and gyms exist outside of Southern California.

Plus it said his condo is 1k/month so his mortgage is low for that area.

Sorry that he chose to not get finish his education (could have gone with distance learning while he traveled), or put money away for a time like this, but yeah its called life and sometimes it blows.


He's supporting his country in competition. His country needs to offer him a few more options for him for such service, like they extend many public and military employees that serve the country
 
2009-03-16 03:15:57 PM  
bhcompy:

He's supporting his country in competition. His country needs to offer him a few more options for him for such service, like they extend many public and military employees that serve the country


While I love sports as much as the next guy. He's not CURRENTLY doing that, he's swimming in local meets. Not for Team USA.

He DID swim for Team USA and he won money and prizes and lived off a fat sponsorship. All of that is gone now, poor planning on his part doesn't constitute an emergency on our parts. We have some more important things to take care of.
 
2009-03-16 03:22:44 PM  
bhcompy: He's supporting his country in competition. His country needs to offer him a few more options for him for such service

Bullshiat. He made an extremely handsome living by swimming - and well into his 30's. The man is in probably the 99th percentile for income earned and longevity when it comes to a swimming 'career'. He's owed nothing.
 
2009-03-16 03:47:40 PM  
bubbaprog: superdolfan1:
No sympathy here.

Did you bother to read the article? He has to make enough money in order to support his family for the years that come after his career is over.

All of you idiots saying "he should just get a job" are ignoring the fact that this IS his job. What would you have him do? We're talking ten years or more of time he'll have to have support while he works his way into a private life -- it's not like there are jobs willing to hire people with no experience for decent pay right now.

There are a farkton of idiots in these fark threads telling people to "get a job" who are completely oblivious to the fact that THERE ARE NO farkING JOBS OUT THERE RIGHT NOW.


What would I have him do? The same thing that thousands of others have to do when faced with the same situation: settle for whatever comes along. This *individual* is making a lot more than many his own age and he's crying over it. The worst part is that you're defending him. SWIMMING IS NOT A JOB. It's a sport. As with any athlete, one day he can't compete anymore. It happens. That doesn't mean you go crying to the media. Think what would happen if all of the NFL players who get waived every year went crying to the media because they can't "earn a living playing football". Instead they go and get different jobs, like running drugs, holding up banks - oh, wait, that's just the Bengals and Broncos.

But I digress. This guy seems to be bitter over Phelps' success, even after the "incident". I'm sorry he's not earning six figures. Neither am I. He might have to join the rest of us and get a real job. No, bubbaprog, swimming is not a real job. It's a temp job. And regarding your comment that there are no jobs out there, that's wrong. There are plenty of jobs. They just may not be jobs that most people want to do. Especially this guy.
 
2009-03-16 04:13:36 PM  
no, that would be: "Brother, can you spare a dimebag?"
 
2009-03-16 04:25:45 PM  
Boo hoo, my ER nurse wife who pulls in some pretty good cash and I can't afford our $1,000 month mortgage on a condo. Move stupid. Find something cheaper. I bet you had a swimming scholarship, use that degree you earned to find a job. That will support you after you aren't swimming anymore.
 
2009-03-16 04:39:20 PM  
FTFA: He earns $10,000 to $20,000 for motivational speeches,

He could always move into a van by the river, I suppose.
i80.photobucket.com
 
2009-03-16 04:47:51 PM  
$1K a month in California is pretty cheap, actually. Even for a condo.

Yeah, this is a crybaby article. No, Phelps will not lend a dime to him, not on your nelly. No, I'm not sorry his money has disappeared. He had it, where did it go? Not just in travel and expenses.
 
2009-03-16 05:44:07 PM  
Ahh, the athletes. Such a sense of entitlement.

/Get a REAL job.
 
2009-03-16 07:08:40 PM  
I love how Fark, which is filled with people wasting time instead of working at their actual jobs, are beating down a guy who trained for years to elevate the image of his country in a positive manner.

Maybe you should say the same of the military, who train and practice to stay in fighting shape in case we get caught in war, which happens more infrequently than the time they put in training in marching formation and rifle presentation. Or would that make you too self-righteous?
 
2009-03-16 07:30:03 PM  
Military service = swimming? I'm going to let you rethink that one for a minute before jumping in.
 
2009-03-16 07:33:09 PM  
Jedekai,

Military=essential service of a nation one often dies for but serves anyway knowing this.

Swimming (or any other sport)=hobby that if you're one of the very few you might get paid for but it will never last forever, so plan accordingly
 
2009-03-16 07:33:47 PM  
/b
 
2009-03-16 08:53:05 PM  
SinPoker: Is there a video anywhere of that 4x100 race? I've been looking around and can't find it.

Try this
Link (new window)
 
2009-03-16 09:00:17 PM  
As a former high performance athlete I am really getting a kick out of....


Seriously though, as a former high performance swimmer, I can understand how balancing a regular job with that type of schedule is almost impossible. You are up every morning at 4:45, in the pool till 7:30, home by 8:15... off to the pool again at 3:00, in at 3:30 - 5:30, home at 6... Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday, as well as traveling a few times a month Thursday-Sunday. Even if you could find a part time job that was acomidating, you are so physically drained that it is near impossible to want to do anything else.

Most of you are also not taking into account the fact that he needs to make some sort of money now for his future. Otherwise when he hits 65, he will be behind the general population by 15 years of possible income. Even if he goes back and gets a degree or Masters it is still difficult to jump into the job market with any sort of future by that point. Being an olympic athlete can be financially crippling not just during your prime, but for years after.
 
2009-03-16 09:56:36 PM  
What he needs to do is hit the bong and have pictures taken, or get busted for DUI.

THEN tell his sad story. He'll be rolling in bucks in no time.

The problem is that no one knows who he is outside of swimming. And a good tragedy will get his name front and center.

Pathetic? Maybe. But in this society--it works.
 
2009-03-16 10:39:23 PM  
Lebronandwade: As a former high performance athlete I am really getting a kick out of....


Seriously though, as a former high performance swimmer, I can understand how balancing a regular job with that type of schedule is almost impossible. You are up every morning at 4:45, in the pool till 7:30, home by 8:15... off to the pool again at 3:00, in at 3:30 - 5:30, home at 6... Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday, as well as traveling a few times a month Thursday-Sunday. Even if you could find a part time job that was accommodating, you are so physically drained that it is near impossible to want to do anything else.

Most of you are also not taking into account the fact that he needs to make some sort of money now for his future. Otherwise when he hits 65, he will be behind the general population by 15 years of possible income. Even if he goes back and gets a degree or Masters it is still difficult to jump into the job market with any sort of future by that point. Being an Olympic athlete can be financially crippling not just during your prime, but for years after.


It is the career that he (or any athlete) has chosen. With that choice come the accolades and the pitfalls. You can't expect anyone to feel sorry for him after he made that choice, just like you can't expect anyone for feel sorry for anyone else who made a choice that doesn't accommodate for their future.

It almost sounds like you are saying that we, the non-athletes, should supplement his current and future incomes simply because of the career choice he has made.

Making a living being an athlete is a gamble. For every Dan Marino there's a Brock Berlin. For every Phelps, there's a Lezak. I would NEVER tell one of my children, regardless of how athletically gifted they may be, that they should put their long term future (and retirement) on hold so they could put it all into the sport they excel in. That would not only be foolish, but also irresponsible.

He made his bed. He needs to lie in it. And not expect us to make it for him every day by subsidising his poor career choice (although making an average of $20K per month for running your mouth doesn't sound that bad).
 
kth
2009-03-17 11:11:52 AM  
He can be my poolboy.

Oh wait, it isn't Peirsol? Nevermind.
 
2009-03-17 08:44:21 PM  
biatching about hours?

try being a farking chef
 
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