An open letter to Gary Zenkel

I have not been watching the Olympics. My wife and kids are out of town and I’ve been the only one in my house since July 25 — and I’ve barely even turned on the television. I have, however, used my iPad extensively to watch movies and television shows. If I was able to use the NBC iOS apps to watch the Olympics, I would, but they ridiculously require a cable subscription to login. I do have an antenna that brings the NBC network into my home, but it is less convenient (for me) to watch that way, and I’m opposed to the delay NBC is imposing on events.

So, I’ve sent the following email to Gary Zenkel, the NBC executive in charge of the 2012 Summer Olympics.


I’m sure you’ve been getting tons of email of late, but I just want to add my voice to the growing number of people that are utterly dissatisfied with and appalled by the way NBC has handled this year’s Olympic coverage.
  1. Not airing events live is inexcusable. If a popular event takes place at an inconvenient time for NBC’s advertisers, feel free to rebroadcast the event during primetime if you want, but in an age of Twitter, Facebook, and internet real-time updates, NBC should be airing the events as they happen.
  2. Requiring a cable subscription login for you iOS apps is ridiculous and insulting. I don’t have cable, and therefore cannot use the apps. I do have an antenna and a television, so I could watch the previously-mentioned crappy experience provided by NBC, but I choose not to and you lost a viewer of your network.
I hope the backlash you’ve felt this year will spur NBC to evaluate it’s priorities and make changes that will respect your network’s viewers, as opposed to corporate advertisers.

Gary’s email is, and if you feel the same, I’d recommend sending him an email, too.


Out for the weekend

So, this weekend we spent out-and-about in Austin. Saturday we left the little one with her grandmother and met up with Travis and Karla for a lat lunch. We went to El Chile, which was nice since it’s been probably a couple months since Emily and I have been there. I had one of their micheladas, which is a giant schooner of beer with a spicy concoction around the rim. Karla went with the Prickly Pear margarita and Trav picked a top shelf rocks rita. Karla’s looked the best, so of course I had to take a pic:

Prickly Pear Margarita

After El Chile, we picked up the little one from grandma’s, made a quick pit-stop at the house, then headed to Mozart’s for some coffee. The sun was going down and it was getting chilly, so we had our coffee, talked a little, then headed home. Here’s a view from the deck at Mozart’s:

 Mozart's Deck

Sunday was the last Sunday of the month and that meant it was time for the Silkenson family lunch at Central Market. Actually, the event is “sponsored” by my grandmother on my mom’s side, and my cousins from that side of the family usually come too, so I don’t really think it’s fair to attach the Silkenson name to it–let’s just call it a family lunch. Anyway, it was fun as usual. Emily and I took Charley and my brother Seneca and his wife brought their two kids: Hayden and Bailey. My brother Bala and his wife Amber weren’t able to make it, but they usually show up with their son Zayd.

(EDIT: My brother and his wife Molly were there too. He pointed this out to me via twitter and I think his feelings were a little hurt that I left him out of this post.)

Carting the little one around to so many places definitely makes things more complicated than when it was just me and Emily, but she makes up for it with her cuteness.