Hearne: The Never Ending Love Story of Tommy Morrison

Tommy & Dawn Two

Tommy & Dawn Two…
In better days

I’m baaaaack…

And just in time to share a Tommy Morrison tale or two while I dig myself out from a short vacation and prepare to unleash shocking new revelations about former Kansas City boxer Tommy Morrsion.

Morrison was practically a franchise in my column at the Star for 16 years. From the earliest revelations about his unbridled passion for Elvis and exotic, wild animals – while he pissed off a reported $12 million in career earnings – to his current brush with death as a penniless shadow of the fair-haired boy we once knew.

But return with me now, to those heady days when Tommy seemingly could do no wrong even while actually doing just about everything wrong.

Like the time he bedded & married a pair of comely blondes named Dawn. Continue reading

Posted in Hearne_Christopher | 14 Comments

New Jack City: The End is Near, In Fact, It’s Now

win-tickets-star-trek-into-darkness-hollywood-premiereTake my Labor Day weekend quiz…

Aside from a barrage of mattress sales, what else is this end of summer weekend generally known for?

When it comes to movies it’s the clearing of the shelves. A last ditch effort by the studios to get rid of spring and summer leftovers.

Point in case are these holiday ‘WEAK-end’ titles:

* ‘CLOSED CIRCUIT’—A low grade British crime thriller set against a deadly London terrorist attack. Ex lovers (and defense barristers) Erica Bana and Rebecca Hall now uncovering an M.I. 5 cover up. Continue reading

Posted in Jack_Poessiger | 5 Comments

Paul Wilson: Bad Hump Day for Fort Hood Shooter



Wednesday was a mixed bag for Major Nidal Hasan…

The Army psychiatrist was sentenced to death for the 2009 shooting rampage at Ft. Hood. He managed to fire 146 times, kill 13 and wound 32 others – including an Olathe girl – completing the worst mass shooting in U.S. Military history.

At the end of the shooting Hassan himself was wounded and left a paraplegic. Small consolation, but hey, it’s something.

Hasan heard the unanimous decision handed down by 13 senior officers.  It took less than 2 hours to reach the verdict – most likely made before they left their jury seats – but they had to make it look good and deliberate at least a little. Continue reading

Posted in Paul Wilson | 22 Comments

Sounds Good: KC Irish Fest @ Crown Center, Quiet Corral @ Granada, Steely Dan @ Midland

I guess this is the last weekend of summer?

I always thought that it was September 21st, but whatever.  There’s some good stuff going down all over the place.  Like the KC Irish Fest at Crown Center that features musical performances by the Clumsy Lovers on Saturday and Sunday, and of course The Elders to close the thing out on Sunday night.  Plus lots more, check it out here yo.

There’s more…. Continue reading

Posted in Matthew_Donnelly | Comments Off on Sounds Good: KC Irish Fest @ Crown Center, Quiet Corral @ Granada, Steely Dan @ Midland

Jack Goes Confidential: ‘CLOSED CIRCUIT’ Underwhelms as Terrorist Thriller

Closed-Circuit-Movie-1The TV spots for CLOSED CIRCUIT  look really exciting – fast cuts, action, an international suspense thriller…

I should have seen it coming.

The tip-off that this wasn’t going to be as exciting as advertised should have been in the narration of the commercials primarily American voice over. What that covers up is the film’s heavy English brogue which you barely notice in the TV spots but make the movie hard to follow in real life since, after all, CLOSED CIRCUIT is an all-Brit production.

And the story? Continue reading

Posted in Jack Poessiger | Comments Off on Jack Goes Confidential: ‘CLOSED CIRCUIT’ Underwhelms as Terrorist Thriller

Leftridge: Leftridge Buys Home, Car, Needs Your Advice About Cable TV


just kidding

So unless something wildly unforeseen occurs within the next couple of weeks, I’ll soon be living in a home that I purchased in the beautiful suburban sprawl of Overland Park. And because of this monumental change, I’ll no longer be taking the bus to work as I have for the past four years.

So I bought a car.

(I’d briefly entertained the notion of taking the bus from Johnson County each and every day, but after talking to coworkers who’ve attempted the same thing, I came to the conclusion that such a journey would likely take anywhere from two to four hours. No thanks, JO.)

With all of this newly acquired, crippling debt (to be fair, mortgage+car payment+insurance= still cheaper than my current rent… sick, right?), I’ve decided that I’d like to start cutting as many costs as possible to pay down my debt as quickly as I can.

This is what everyone does, right? Continue reading

Posted in Brandon Leftridge, Uncategorized | Tagged , , | 31 Comments

Starbeams: Billy Ray & Miley Cyrus ‘Forgiveness Day’ & Lenexa Driving NYSE ‘BATS’


Miley Cyrus

Tuesday was Global Forgiveness Day. I’m trying to find it in my heart to forgive…Billy Ray Cyrus.


I was disgusted by Miley Cyrus performance at the Video Music Awards, but do you know where to find that Chuck E. Cheese costume?  I’m asking for a friend.

 ******* Continue reading

Posted in Starbeams | 3 Comments

Hearne: Jason Whitlock Looms LARGE on Keith Olbermann’s New ESPN Show

Whitlock on Olbermann

Whitlock on Olbermann

This could be his big break…

Word that former Kansas City Star sports scribe Jason Whitlock will be riding herd over his own ESPN sports blog with the stated mission of developing and bringing along new, younger voices (writers) poses a two huge questions.

Could this be Whitlock’s long awaited ticket to a healthy six-figure paycheck? And can he handle the role of being a mentor to up-and-coming, young, African American sportswriter wannabes?

“Pretty bizarre to set Jason up as mentor/role model, unless he’s matured some,” said one former Whitlock editor. Continue reading

Posted in Hearne_Christopher | 33 Comments

Leftridge: TV Time: Orange is the New Black

orangecoverThe world moves too fast, anymore.

At least that’s what I tell myself in order to feel better about being behind on things. The truth is, it’s probably something that just naturally happens as you get older. Your finger slips from the pulse. You fall out of touch.

One minute, you’re putting them in stitches with some kick-ass Keyboard Cat reference, and the next, you’re secretly Googling “WHAT IS A GANGNAM STYLE” so you don’t continue to stare at someone with dead-eyes when they make a Psy reference.

And so it goes.

So I was a little late to the Orange is the New Black party, but not by a million miles, I’d guess. Since discovering it on Netflix—like House of Cards and the latest installment of Arrested Development, it’s a Netflix original—I haven’t shut up about it. And honestly, I feel like a lot of people have heard of it, but haven’t yet given it a shot.

Those people are making a huge mistake.

Continue reading

Posted in Brandon Leftridge, Entertainment, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | 9 Comments

Hearne: There’s More to Tommy Morrison Than the ESPN Story

rocky-vAnd now, the rest of the story…

Make no mistake, former Kansas City Star reporter Elizabeth Merrill scored a huge coup in tracking down Tommy Morrison‘s mom Diana and getting her on the record for ESPN that Tommy is dying of the AIDS virus. That and tracking down and talking to a number of other Tommy relatives and hangers on.

However that still left plenty of holes in the tragic take of the kid from Jay, Oklahoma who Kansas City came to embrace – the dude at the time who played Tommy Gunn in Rocky.

Enter Susan Martin of Phoenix – the mother of one of Tommy’s close friends – who befriended him in 2006 and let him live with her for six months before Morrison started to go off the deep end again while having an affair with a married woman from California. Continue reading

Posted in Hearne_Christopher | 39 Comments

Leftridge: Royals’ Season Sunk, Took Longer Than Usual

fullstadiumWell, that’s your ballgame, folks.

Though it comes as no surprise—we didn’t REALLY think the Royals would contend this year, did we?—it is a bit more melancholy than years past. That’s because, unlike the past 20 years of futility, those magnificent whores teased us all the way into late August. With the cicadas screeching their awful songs of anger and the Chiefs finding their footing on hot Friday and Saturday nights, the Royals—yes THOSE Royals—actually remained relevant. A fistful of games out of a Wildcard spot, a few more than that away from a division lead… foreign territory.

This was a team built off of good-to-occasionally-great starting pitching, a near-perfect bullpen and a ridiculously good defense. Oh man, that defense.

But the inconsistent and often punch-less offense foretold the team’s doom with each at bat. Miserable on base percentage. Unable to take a goddamned pitch. Striking out with the bases loaded. Grounding into inning-ending double plays.

Classic Royaling. Continue reading

Posted in Brandon Leftridge, Sports | Tagged , , | 16 Comments

Donnelly: Sporting Continue Slide, Lose 1-0 at Chicago

“When you don’t score, you’re not going to win,” explained Sporting head coach Peter Vermes after another disappointing result, this one at the hands of the Chicago Fire.

And just like always, KC had more possession and more shots than their opponent.  But shots and possession obviously don’t mean much unless you can translate that into points.

Once Chicago got on the board about 15 minutes into the first half, they were able to do what every smart team does to KC – sit back, bunker in and make Sporting try to create something, which usually means swinging cross after cross into the box.   Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Hearne: Talking Tommy Morrison on the Santa Fe Trail

UnknownTime flies when you’re on vacation and I’m writing this live in Santa Fe New Mexico

I’m going to keep it short because, after all, it is a vacation but I’ve got some important news updates to share that I’ll be fleshing out later today and tomorrow.

For starters, the Tommy Morrison news that Brandon broke locally Friday – I checked the Star, Pitch and that Tony character and they had nada – was huge. And Brandon put it in perfect perspective. Kansas City has a huge inferiority complex which is why we put our sports heroes – however few – on such loft pedestals.

And Tommy Morrison – even though he wasn’t even close to being from KC – was right up there with Len Dawson, George Brett and Tom Watson, just like Brandon said.

Except that Tommy was a known bad boy.

Don’t get me wrong, Dawson, Brett and Watson have plenty of skeletons in their closets. Continue reading

Posted in Hearne_Christopher | 25 Comments

Leftridge: ESPN Reports Boxer Tommy Morrison on Death’s Doorstep

tommycoverTommy Morrison has always been a little crazy, and now he’s dying and a little crazy.

According to a post on ESPN.com, Morrison’s 17-year battle with HIV has morphed into full-blown AIDS and the former heavyweight champion’s days are likely limited. He’s been confined to a bed for the better part of a year now—probably in Nebraska, though even this is unconfirmed—being cared for by Trisha, his wife.

If you know anything about Morrison’s strange saga, you’re well aware that he doesn’t believe he has HIV. He doesn’t even really believe that HIV is an ACTUAL thing. Like most insane people, he has his own take on things: Morrison thinks that his diagnosis is a government conspiracy and that it was possibly perpetuated by a rival fight promoter.

Trisha—who has had unprotected sex with her husband, as wives are wont to do—doesn’t believe in the diagnosis either.

If the ESPN report is true—and I’m sure it is—it’s the end of a sad chapter in Kansas City sports history. Continue reading

Posted in Brandon Leftridge, Sports | Tagged , , | 82 Comments

Sutherland: Here’s What’s the Matter With ‘The Land of Ahs’

3258405895_50bd2d54b5To: Alex Smith

Senior Leverhulme Research Fellow, Department of Sociology

University of Warwick, Coventry, England

RE:   The Land of “Ahs”

Dear Alex:

Thank you for your note.  I can’t wait to “break bread” with you upon your return to these shores. The reference line above is both a play on words (Kansas as “OZ,” as in the Wizard of Oz and an allusion to a particularly egregious corporate welfare scheme wherein local politicians and out-of-state promoters would feed at the public trough by developing an amusement park on a toxic waste site, at tax-payer expense!

This project is a perfect metaphor for the Moderate Machine in “Jo-Co.”  I don’t know why, except for reasons of political convenience, any of the good earnest liberals who make up the Mainstream Coalition would want to get in bed with these Grand Masters of Crony Capitalism.

Consider the following acts by people who have been part of the Mod-Squad: Continue reading

Posted in Dwight D. Sutherland, Jr. | 12 Comments

Hearne: Dear Jesse (Elvis), Don’t Take This the Wrong Way but…Love Maria

Screen shot 2013-08-22 at 9.12.35 PMSpeaking of Elvis aka Jesse

At the height of the Elvis is Still Alive saga in 2002, former longtime Channel 9 news anchor Maria Antonia got caught up in the excitement.

Way caught up.

In a Christmas Day column in 2002, headlined ” Sealed with a kiss?” I wrote that while “many Cowtowners have been busy posting missives to Santa, now comes word that KMBC-TV, Channel 9, anchor Maria Antonia penned one to Elvis. Or his alter ego, Jesse, if you buy into the school of thought that the King is in hiding and using the name of his twin brother, who died at birth.”

That according to Linda Johson, the assistant to Jesse’s Parkville doc Donald Hinton. Continue reading

Posted in Hearne_Christopher | 9 Comments

Hearne: Source Says America’s Pub to Morph into Party Rooms & Beer Deli

Screen shot 2013-08-22 at 8.44.07 PMAbout those twin bars slated to open in the former America’s Pub in Westport…

Mum’s the word on what the partners concept will be, but Westport sources say the owners have been scouting a space for the twin concepts for the past year.

“I don’t know much about it, other than what I’ve heard,” says one source. “But I’ve heard they’re going to divide one part of the space into a bunch of individual rooms – like multiple little rooms that you can rent out and have your own private party with karaoke or whatever.

“And the other part of the space is going to be like an upscale deli that you can go in and pick from a huge selection of all kinds of beer and eat deli sandwiches. And if you like one of their beers, you can buy a six pack of it to go.” Continue reading

Posted in Hearne_Christopher | Comments Off on Hearne: Source Says America’s Pub to Morph into Party Rooms & Beer Deli

Starbeams: Food Trucker Kelli Daniels Hits Food Network & ‘Pinkled’ in MU Land

Kelli Daniels

Kelli Daniels

Kelli Daniel of Kansas City’s Good You Food truck gets to compete on The Food Network‘s “Chef Wanted” show tonight at 9:00.  Meanwhile, my wife’s dinner will be featured on the season premiere of CSI.


A man has been sneaking into bedrooms in Columbia, Mo. and sliding into bed with sleeping women.  Or as they call it in Columbia: Getting Pinkled!

******* Continue reading

Posted in Starbeams | Comments Off on Starbeams: Food Trucker Kelli Daniels Hits Food Network & ‘Pinkled’ in MU Land

Hearne: Mum’s the Word, but Elvis is Still Alive — Honest

Big In VegasIt should have been a no-brainer…

That there’d be a stiff price to pay for revealing to the world that King of Rock n Roll Elvis Presley was still alive. But it didn’t seem quite that evident a dozen years ago and a stiff price for telling that story has been paid.

Let’s assume for the sake of argument thatElvis is still walking the earth. That he’s 77 now and remains in hiding, albeit with the needs of many senior citizens in terms of ramped up healthcare.  After all, he was a party machine back in the day.

Let’s further assume that former Parkville MD Donald Hinton was indeed treating the king in 2001 like he said he was when he wrote in the book, “The Truth About Elvis Aron Presley In His Own Words.”

You guys okay with that for now? Continue reading

Posted in Hearne_Christopher | 8 Comments

Paul Wilson: Copycat Alert — Has Robin Thicke Blurred The Lines?


copycatSeems like there isn’t much today that’s totally and uniquely original…

You can find some form of “prior art” in almost anything if you’re remotely paying attention;

Facebook looked like MySpace. 

Twitter is just a glorified text message.

iTunes morphed from the file sharing primordial ooze of Limewire and Napster; only iTune’s legal

YouTube does little more than allow other people to see your videos – how original is that? And for that it carries a $50 billion dollar market value while you give up ownership of your content (but that’s a whole nother story).

However when it comes to Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines,” the breakout hit of the summer, soul legend Marvin Gaye‘s estate thinks Thicke has infringed on Gaye’s rights almost as much as Gaye’s dad did when he shot and killed him in 1984. Continue reading

Posted in Paul Wilson | 28 Comments