Hoffman on a potential Houston media hurricane and a hot-doggin' celeb
You may have seen this news tidbit on ABC13’s website last week: Headline: “Former investigative reporter Wayne Dolcefino arrested in a Harris County court.”
The entire story was three sentences: “Former investigative reporter and TV personality Wayne Dolcefino was arrested at a Harris County court Tuesday. Dolcefino was reportedly asking questions when he was arrested for contempt of court, in the 16th criminal court of Judge Darrell Jordan. Dolcefino was an investigative reporter at KTRK for 27 years before starting Dolcefino Consulting in 2012.”
Wow! That’s all Wayne-o gets? Three measly, simple declarative sentences that don’t even say what Dolcefino did that caused the judge to throw the book at him, or what happened to Dolcefino after, or what’s going to happen next?
Basically, Dolcefino walked into Harris County Criminal Court to ask Judge Darrell W. Jordan to order investigations involving cases that Dolcefino is working on. Dolcefino now runs a private consulting company.
The judge was in the middle of a hearing on Zoom (the new norm) and told Dolcefino to be quiet. Yeah, that’ll happen. If you’re familiar with Dolcefino’s work as an investigative reporter and his memorable severe weather coverage, you know that’s an impossibility for “Hurricane Wayne.”
One thing led to another, yadda yadda yadda (with Dolcefino doing most of the yadda’ing), and Judge Jordan cited Dolcefino for contempt of court, and slapped him with a $500 fine, three days in jail and six months probation. Dolcefino spent the rest of that day and night in jail, and was released the next day after posting $100 bail. The judge ordered Dolcefino to wear an ankle monitor.
I’ve known Dolcefino a long time. He’s loud. He can wear you down. He’s a big, burly hugger. When he sees me, he kisses me on the cheek. I don’t particularly enjoy that, but there’s no use fighting 10,000 years of Dolcefino DNA.
Next up: Dolcefino’s case is headed to the Court of Criminal Appeals in Austin. Dolcefino is represented by lead counsel Brian Wice along with Dan Cogdell. Wice, in addition to being a crackerjack appellate lawyer, is the on-air legal analyst for Channel 2. Oh, this is going to get good.
Joey is hot-doggin’ it
It couldn’t have been fun for basketball fans to watch the Celtics win the NBA title year after year in the ’50s and ’60s: 11 championships between 1957-1969. Same for college hoops fans when UCLA won 10 NCAA titles between 1964-1975. And baseball fans when the Yankees won six World Series between 1936-43, and five straight between 1949-1953.
Dynasties are bo-ring! Only it’s worse for competitive eating fans these days. Joey“Jaws” Chestnut just wrapped up his fifth consecutive, and 13 of the last 14 Nathan’s Famous Hot Dog Eating championships. Not only is he lapping everything in sight, especially the competition, last week was his biggest margin of victory ever. Chestnut broke his own world record by inhaling 75 hot dogs and buns in 10 minutes. Second place went to Darron Breedon with “only” 42 franks ‘n’ buns. That’s dominance. That’s annihilation. That’s not fun to watch anymore.
I am a big fan of Joey Jaws and the whole July 4 hot dog contest tradition. I started attending the event in person, then became a judge (until “the incident” in 2018). But this year, for the first time since 2000, I didn’t watch the event.
Instead, I had an 11 am tee time at the Lago Vista municipal golf course. You know I’ve lost interest in watching someone eat 21,000 calories of highly processed meat and buns made with preservatives and enriched white flour if I’d rather be hitting a golf ball more than 100 times, not including do-overs, in scorching Texas heat under COVID-19 rules (no touching the flagsticks, etc.).
I didn’t need to watch the hot dog contest. I knew who was going to win. Chestnut told the world he was going to win, and even predicted that he’d break his record of 74 hot dogs set in 2018. Someone I know, who dabbles in the high-risk world of wagering, set Chestnut’s over-under number at 73 dogs. I took the over, easiest $100 I ever made. It was like betting on an event that already happened, and you know who won.
It was the lock of the millennium. This year’s contest didn’t have the excitement of years past,when 35,000 crazies (or about 5,000 if you’re really counting) pack a street corner in Coney Island to cheer on the competitors. The 2020 contest was held in a hermetically sealed studio, with no fans, the announcers wearing masks, and the eaters separated by plexiglass screens for COVID protection. So while I appreciate Chestnut for his singular domination of the sport – he’s won more pro titles now than Michael Jordan and Tom Brady combined — and maybe the ESPN announcer was right, “Joey Chestnut is the greatest athlete in history” — he may be killing the sport he popularized.
Except for pro wrestling, sports isn't fun when you know who's going to win. It's why I can't watch a recorded sports event. It's too tempting to fast-forward to the end and go grab a sandwich.
Making matters worse for competitive eating, Chestnut is only 38, just entering his prime digestive years, and there doesn't appear to be a young gun on the horizon to challenge him. Chestnut could win Coney Island 10 more times. The women’s side of competitive eating is an equally dismal dull affair (name that tune) with Miki Sudo taking her seventh consecutive title last week. She’s only 34 without a challenger in sight. Sudo set a record for women — 48-1/2 hot dogs. Her closest “challenger,” someone named Larell Marie Mele, downed a mere 16 dogs. That’s a midnight snack for Sudo. Like Chestnut, Sudo could win the next 10 years. I’m betting on it.
Pet of the week
Name: Lola, as in the Kinks song, Lola Falana, and “Whatever Lola Wants” from the musical Damn Yankees. Didn’t see that one coming, huh?
Birthdate: June 30, 2016. I’m just entering the best years of my life. I’ve got a good long run ahead of me, but I’ll settle for leisurely walks.
Ethnicity: I’m a yellow retriever mixed up girly-girl. I’m a full-figured gal, 71 pounds, but I carry it well. I love car rides, playing fetch, and having my belly rubbed. Who doesn't? But most of all, I love people. Especially you, if you’ll come adopt me. I’m house-trained and very obedient. I’m the total package. I’m already spayed and checked out by a real vet who went to college and everything. I’m easy going and lovable, so let’s get this love connection going. I’m even a good watchdog. Around here, the CAP people say I’m super-friendly and just a good ol’ girl.
Come and get me: If you want to take me home, drop an email to adoptions@CAP4Pets.org. Remember, all dogs are half-price this summer, thanks to West Houston Subaru.