Not Mr T this time around
June 5, 2007 12:51 PM   Subscribe

Did Win Butler (of Arcade Fire) steal some guy's basketball? Blogger says he did (with comments), Wil Butler (Win's brother) says he didn't. Drama!
posted by GuyZero (71 comments total)

 
No Arcade Fire did not steal some guy's basketball, because the guy with the basketball does not exist, and neither does the basketball.
posted by poppo at 12:56 PM on June 5, 2007


WHO THE FUCK IS ARCADE FIRE?
posted by quonsar at 12:59 PM on June 5, 2007 [4 favorites]


Does Wil's response really necessitate its own blog?
posted by Bryan Behrenshausen at 1:01 PM on June 5, 2007


Oh no, quonsar fell out of his wheelchair again! Somebody get his pills and turn on "The Price is Right", or he'll be up all night writing letters to the local newspaper!

There there, old darling...
posted by hermitosis at 1:02 PM on June 5, 2007 [1 favorite]


Slow news day?
posted by ninjew at 1:04 PM on June 5, 2007


That's nothing. Fiona Apple still has one of my favorite t-shirts.
posted by facetious at 1:04 PM on June 5, 2007


Your favorite band sucks steals basketballs.
posted by drezdn at 1:04 PM on June 5, 2007


Rufus Wainright ate the last slice of cheesecake!

The Arctic Monkeys swiped my shoe polish!

Jello Biafra ate my balls!
posted by elr at 1:06 PM on June 5, 2007 [3 favorites]


Win Butler's crime spree continues.
posted by Rangeboy at 1:12 PM on June 5, 2007 [1 favorite]


Tune in next week, when The Guy Whose Basketball Was Allegedly Stolen By Arcade Fire accuses prominent web personality Matt Haughey of stealing his blog's rightful title.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 1:13 PM on June 5, 2007


I bet if he did steal the basketball, he did it very emotionally. With a string section and lots of crescendo.
posted by Peter H at 1:15 PM on June 5, 2007 [1 favorite]


And some high pitched chick on backup.
posted by Peter H at 1:16 PM on June 5, 2007


I'd have to agree with quonsar on this one. WTF is an Arcade Fire, a basketball thief collective ?
posted by RMD at 1:17 PM on June 5, 2007


*Looks up Arcade Fire*

*Considers feelings on sports*

*Evaluates opinions of theft*

*Decides that I have nothing to say on this topic*

*Posts this decision to make everyone aware*

*Relaxes in the knowledge that I have made the correct choices in life*
posted by quin at 1:18 PM on June 5, 2007 [4 favorites]


A good post to MetaFilter is something that meets the following criteria: most people haven't seen it before, there is something interesting about the content on the page, and it might warrant discussion from others.

Well, 2 out of 3...
posted by pupdog at 1:22 PM on June 5, 2007


posted by quonsar WHO THE FUCK IS ARCADE FIRE?

WHO THE FUCK CARES?
posted by fandango_matt at 1:26 PM on June 5, 2007


cold4thestreets said...
What's the big deal? I stole Win Butler's album off the internet.
June 5, 2007 12:29 PM

Ok, that'll do. This ain't gettin' any better.
posted by dash_slot- at 1:36 PM on June 5, 2007


Huh. Reading those comments—really, the only ones that are important are S's and William Butler's comments—it seems obvious to me that a) Win Butler really was an annoying jerk that deserved to be escorted out of the court by security; and b) if he has Chris H.'s basketball, it's because Aaron (another friend of Butler's) picked it up by mistake. It's weird that he wouldn't notice he had someone else's basketball—but perhaps maybe he did and didn't care (figuring that someone else would get his).

The only "evidence" that Chris H. has that Win Butler stole his ball is that the desk clerk said she saw Butler with it. But two other witnesses who left with Butler said he didn't have it. The desk clerk's account alone isn't that credible. However, one possibility no one seems to have considered is that Butler did have Chris H's ball when he talked to the clerk, then realized that he had the wrong ball and discarded it, then when his friend Aaron showed up, he asked Aaron to retrieve his ball from the court. If Win Butler is the asshole that he seems to be—notice that his brother doesn't dispute and in fact seems to believe he was acting like a real jerk—then he may well have either taken the ball vindictively and discarded it, or unknowingly and discarded it.

I also don't think that William Butler is being "whiny", as someone in the comments accused him of being. I think he makes a good case for how much of a pain it is that some anonymous person manages to get everyone to believe Win stole a basketball and, frankly, the public loves these types of things. It will be remembered and asked about by the press. However, Arcade Fire is handling this all wrong. William (better Win, but it sounds like that's not likely) should have just offered to buy Chris H a new basketball and autograph it (or two balls, one autographed) while still avowing Win's innocence. "Hey, dud, I'm sorry someone stole your ball. It wasn't Win, even though he was being pretty rude on the court. So, by way of apologizing for his rudeness, and because it sucks that someone stole your ball, we're buying you another one. Where should we send it?"

I can't believe I care about this at all and I wrote all this. It's not like I'm a fan, really.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 1:39 PM on June 5, 2007


Uma Thurman was in front of me one day at Dean & Deluca's. She didn't steal anything though.
posted by RMD at 1:42 PM on June 5, 2007 [1 favorite]


George Michael rear ended me in the parking lot.
posted by jefbla at 1:48 PM on June 5, 2007 [1 favorite]


Jenny Lewis stole my pen once when we were both in line at the DMV and she needed to fill out her license renewal form. She asked me what I thought about getting a personalized license plate because she'd just traded in her old car for a used 2002 Toyota Camry and wanted to celebrate her graduation to soccer-mom status. I asked her if she had kids. She chuckled and said, "no, I was just kidding." I told her that if she had a plate in mind, she should go for it—you only live once, I said.

This has been another episode of Banal Indie Rock Celebrity Stories You Don't Want to Read. Tune in next week for another banal indie rock celebrity story you probably won't want to read.
posted by chrominance at 1:57 PM on June 5, 2007


This is the best of the web?
posted by damn dirty ape at 1:59 PM on June 5, 2007


George Michael rear ended me in the parking lot.

Is that what they're calling it these days?
posted by dammitjim at 2:01 PM on June 5, 2007


This is brilliant. In a pre-internet age an incident where a rock star nicked (or did not nick) a basketball would merely be a juicy tale told to friends in the local boozer now it is splashed across the place with some of the best blog names I have heard in the past day.

I did once see Duglas Stewart of BMX bandits fame have an argument with his gorgeous Japanese wife outside Woolworths on Bellshill Main Street in the early 90s but nothing on this scale.
posted by ClanvidHorse at 2:03 PM on June 5, 2007


ARCADE FIRE BE BALLIN' YO
posted by cavalier at 2:07 PM on June 5, 2007


It always makes me a little sad to find out that my pop culture heroes enjoy team sports.
posted by M.C. Lo-Carb! at 2:11 PM on June 5, 2007 [2 favorites]


I'm pretty stoked on the general response (lol wutever get a lif). And I appreciate Wil's comment: "the truth: which is that the Arcade Fire are sort of assholes some of the time.
posted by wemayfreeze at 2:11 PM on June 5, 2007


Oh my god! Arcade Fire is complaining about a $10 court fee? And is stealing basketballs? I think we all need to think about how harmless Internet piracy really is.
posted by geoff. at 2:11 PM on June 5, 2007 [1 favorite]


And Win played basketball for Phillips Exeter? Gives new meaning to calling Arcade Fire pretentious.
posted by geoff. at 2:16 PM on June 5, 2007


Plate of beans, EB, plate of beans.

This has enlivened my day like all getout. And I don't care if it's an elaborate viral blog scheme-thing concoted by a band going out of its collective mind after too long on the road, either. If it's true, it's even funnier.

Win did say a couple of snarky things about Bono in an interview a couple of months ago, but, you know, how doesn't want to say nasty things about Bono? Even I do, and I don't really have anything against him.

Damn. Back to work now.
posted by jokeefe at 2:17 PM on June 5, 2007


Matthew McConaghey came, by himself, into the bar in Mexico where I was drinking with my girls. I offered to buy him a drink but he turned me down flat. Then he danced around like an octopus on coke.
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 2:18 PM on June 5, 2007


The other best comment on the blog, besides the "I stole Win Butler's album off the internet" is this one, imo:

You people don't understand. AF is an awesome band. The laws of the universe dictate that all awesome bands must have a tortured douchebag in their center. This basketball incident? Child's play. Frankly, I expect more from Win. The man should be chewing out interviewers left and right. He should be overturning tables when he isn't comped at restaurants. He should be misquote Kant on Letterman and get arrested in New Mexico for beating an unappreciative audience member with an antique mandolin. A stolen basketball? Please.

*snerk*

Erm, I had Ed O'Brien from Radiohead ignore me once. Does that count?
posted by jokeefe at 2:19 PM on June 5, 2007


Also, I feel this is a good place to link the Tenuous Connections contest.
posted by jokeefe at 2:22 PM on June 5, 2007


John Lennon didn't give my mom's pen back when she lent it to him to sign an autograph for some fangirl back when they opened up for Roy Orbison.

JOHN LENNON IS A DOUCHEY PEN THIEF!

Well, was.

PS. Canadian ball-thieves suck. Well, at least their music does.
posted by mckenney at 2:35 PM on June 5, 2007


The only "evidence" that Chris H. has that Win Butler stole his ball is that the desk clerk said she saw Butler with it. But two other witnesses who left with Butler said he didn't have it...

Cripes, is Ethereal Bligh being written by Agatha Christie now?
posted by GuyZero at 2:37 PM on June 5, 2007 [2 favorites]


Jeez, who cares?
posted by cows of industry at 2:41 PM on June 5, 2007


Ambrosia Voyeur : in Mexico where I was drinking with my girls.

Plural?

Playa.
posted by quin at 2:42 PM on June 5, 2007


More than 3 blogs about this and no badly photoshopped image of Win Butler saying "I can has basketball?" None of the other dude saying "I be hazenating bazkitbl Nooo they be are is steeeeln mah bsktbl!one!?"

Oh intertubes, so mercurial.
posted by OrangeDrink at 2:43 PM on June 5, 2007


I touched Paul Westerberg's roadie. More accurately, he brushed my jacket on his way to the stage. And when Paul came out to play he walked right in front of me and mrs. tacodog. No basketballs were involved though, so no press release was issued.
posted by Tacodog at 2:44 PM on June 5, 2007


Matthew McConaghey came, by himself. Then he danced around like an octopus on coke.

The joy of a little editing.
posted by Peter H at 2:44 PM on June 5, 2007


I've gotten drunk with the Archbishop of Canterbury.
I've spent some time between Sarah McLachlan and a couch.
Mike Murphy stole my girlfriend once.
I didn't want her back.
posted by Floydd at 2:45 PM on June 5, 2007


Ambrosia Voyeur : in Mexico where I was drinking with my girls.

Plural?

Playa.
posted by quin at 2:42 PM


Mexico has a lot of beaches. I don't get it.

Also, this story makes my brain hurt.
posted by sleepy pete at 2:50 PM on June 5, 2007 [1 favorite]


sleepy pete: Sometimes, just remembering all that tequila makes my brain hurt too.
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 2:59 PM on June 5, 2007


I had dinner with Davey Jones once, so you could say he stole my two hours (and I'd bet, [considering that I was 14 years old at the time, dressed inexplicably in a gold embroidered Turkish jacket, light colored jeans, and a pink, batik head scarf, and had absolutely nothing whatsoever to say to him, after all, anyone can get behind I'm Not Your Stepping Stone and Head was pretty cool, but
come on, the Monkees fucking sucked,] that he'd say the same thing about me.)
posted by serazin at 3:00 PM on June 5, 2007


This is brilliant. In a pre-internet age an incident where a rock star nicked (or did not nick) a basketball would merely be a juicy tale told to friends in the local boozer now it is splashed across the place with some of the best blog names I have heard in the past day.

Yeah, that's why I think it qualifies to be posted.

Then he danced around like an octopus on coke.

I lived in Austin when the whole “playing the bongos at his house, nude, in the middle of the night, loud enough to alarm the neighbors, and while in his living room with the curtains wide open—oh, and probably while hopped up on them drugs" thing happened. Word around town was that this was a pretty typical evening for McConaghey.

Plate of beans, EB, plate of beans.

Long ago I came to the conclusion that my destiny in life, the flying spaghetti monster's role for me to play in the universe, was to overthink every. goddam. little. thing.

It's nice to feel actualized.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 3:00 PM on June 5, 2007


serazin, I'll take lunch with Davy Jones over seeing Arcade Fire any day.

To be honest, I'd take a Monkees 8-track cassette over seeing Arcade Fire. It couldn't possibly be any more boring, even if I used it as a coaster.
posted by oneirodynia at 3:39 PM on June 5, 2007


This whole Internet drama cracks me up in ways well put by previous commenters. So I'll just add that people who think that Arcade Fire have gotten rich from their music already are likely mistaken.

Also, touring is not glamorous or easy for most bands. While Butler might have been an asshole trying to make sure he got to play basketball, maybe he had a really tight window in his day for when he'd get to play. Maybe his friends fucked up things by being late. Maybe he was misled or misunderstood about about court policy. And maybe he went a little ballistic when he saw that the one activity he'd been looking forward to for a while was evaporating. Yeah, we should all be courteous to those around us, but I ask those critical of Butler: are you always nice to all customer service representatives? And can this rudeness or even taking the wrong basketball possibly measure up to abusing groupies or assaulting flight attendants, etc.?

The basketball-less guy needs to get a sense of proportion. I might have enjoyed reading about it, but starting a blog about this incident is ridiculous.
posted by hmaroon at 4:08 PM on June 5, 2007


Tiny Tim got grease all over my hand when he shook it.

/just typing that scares me

and...who's arcade fire? Was anyone hurt? did they save the PacMan machine?
posted by HuronBob at 4:14 PM on June 5, 2007


...but I ask those critical of Butler: are you always nice to all customer service representatives?

Yes. But I recognize that's not true of everyone, nor should it be expected of everyone.

The basketball-less guy needs to get a sense of proportion. I might have enjoyed reading about it, but starting a blog about this incident is ridiculous.

Given the context you just provided (though we don't know if it's accurate), I agree with you. However, I guess that his point-of-view is that he's assuming that Win Butler acted like an entitled, selfish jerk because being a rock star, such as he is, has distorted his view of other people and what's expected of him in social interaction. From this point of view, it's only by answering Win Butler back in the public arena that anything is likely to get through his filters.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 4:14 PM on June 5, 2007


The 'rise' of arcade fire is amusing to me, because 99% of the time, on seeing their name, it short-circuits in my brain to Arcadia (yes, showing my age), and I can't help but wonder why d-squared would split up again, instead of milking the nostalgia gravy train to the max. This of course assumes that more people are nostalgic for Duran Duran over Arcadia.

I was once nearly hit by Andrew Dice Clay in Santa Cruz. He came flying out of a parking lot, driving some mid-50's classic land behemoth, and barely screeched to a halt in time for those of us in the sidewalk.

Butler should have played ball with the then-fans (who knows after his little hissy fit if they are still-fans), signed all the balls in the facility, and snuck a keg in to prove his party mettle. or is that party metal. I dunno what Arcade Fire plays =p
posted by nomisxid at 4:26 PM on June 5, 2007


Bah, amateur stuff. I have it on good account that Gordon Gano had made off with one of Michael Jordan's Steakhouses...in broad daylight, no less. THAT, my friends, takes nerve.
posted by Smart Dalek at 4:38 PM on June 5, 2007


Bah, amateur stuff. I have it on good account that Gordon Gano had made off with one of Michael Jordan's Steakhouses...in broad daylight, no less. THAT, my friends, takes nerve.

Are you sure he didn't just burn it to the ground because Jordan's daughter wouldn't put out for him?
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 4:42 PM on June 5, 2007


The only "evidence" that Chris H. has that Win Butler stole his ball is that the desk clerk said she saw Butler with it. But two other witnesses who left with Butler said he didn't have it.

The difference is that the desk clerk is an impartial witness, whereas the people vouching for Win are his brother and his buddy.

Personally, I think Win took the ball and put a flick knife through it in the parking lot as retaliation for getting him thrown out.

Rock and roll!
posted by PeterMcDermott at 5:26 PM on June 5, 2007


This is fucking retarded.

If ever you needed a demonstration of why modern music is completely, utterly fucking useless, now you have it.

Look, if Keith Moon stole someone's basketball, the only reason you might blink would be that it was just too suspiciously normal -- that it could only be a prelude to something really, epically insane. This is what our heroes used to be.

Your favorite band doesn't even rise to the level of suck. Sucking is at least a value judgment, at least some tiny quanta of actual meaning in an ocean of unceasing, horizonless banality. Fuck the Arcade Fire, fuck blogging about them, and fuck this dude and his stupid fucking basketball.
posted by spiderwire at 6:56 PM on June 5, 2007 [1 favorite]


The difference is that the desk clerk is an impartial witness, whereas the people vouching for Win are his brother and his buddy.

That's a good point except that we only have Chris H's word that the desk clerk saw Butler with his ball. Also, her ability to accurately identify the ball is questionable while, in contrast, Butler's two witnesses only have to be able to reliably recognize that Butler didn't have a ball with him.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 7:05 PM on June 5, 2007


Mr. T ate my basketball
posted by ill3 at 7:25 PM on June 5, 2007 [1 favorite]


All of these are now 404s.

ZOMG ARKAD FYR IZ PART UV THE KONSPERASY
posted by dhartung at 7:43 PM on June 5, 2007


Damn titles, I need to start reading them.
posted by ill3 at 7:55 PM on June 5, 2007


Awesome thread.

As a cashier in a hippie health food store, I once saw Donny Osmond pushing a shopping cart with his kid in the seat. He scooped granola into a bag.

Or maybe he stole the granola?
posted by billder at 8:02 PM on June 5, 2007


All of these are now 404s.

Crap! A new broken link record.

Well, what Blogger taketh away, Google giveth.
posted by GuyZero at 8:16 PM on June 5, 2007


I hate that the original blog was deleted, but I love GuyZero for digging up the cache.

Also, I really enjoyed Arcade Fire Stole My Basketball Player. ("The standoff lasted about 457 minutes before Mr. Butler finally left.") I was hoping a rampaging, kleptomaniacal Win Butler would turn into an exciting new Internet meme.
posted by metaly at 8:29 PM on June 5, 2007


It's too bad the original comments page is gone, as that was where all the really good stuff was: someone else indicated that his friend may have accidentally taken the ball, Wil explained how it was going to hurt his Mom's feelings to see her son slandered on the intarw3b.

A loss on the scale of Alexandria.
posted by GuyZero at 8:38 PM on June 5, 2007


Heh. Win Butler said something Saturday night at the Greek Theatre about boycotting the Cal sports department or something. Apparently, there was an incident ...

btw, y'all need a holy ghost enema.
posted by mrgrimm at 10:13 PM on June 5, 2007


So I happened to check my other computer and I still had the comments page loaded up in a tab. So... here it is.

I liked Wil Butler's thing about "Butler Nicks Chap's Football Squib."

And I've now devoted way too much time to this.
posted by metaly at 10:47 PM on June 5, 2007


Did Win Butler (of Arcade Fire) steal some guy's basketball?

NO BUT THE MOTHERFUCKERS SURE JUST STOLE 20 MINUTES OF MY FUCKING LIFE THAT I WANT BACK
posted by loquacious at 12:37 AM on June 6, 2007



All these names and I recognize Donny Osmond and Davy Jones.

*whimper* ouch, my back!
posted by From Bklyn at 12:54 AM on June 6, 2007


Huh. My friend had his baseball bat stolen by Matthew Broderick. Truth! He was playing in Central Park with some of his friends, and Matthew Broderick was playing near them, and at one point asked if they could borrow a bat. They proceeded to use it for, like, 4 hours, then left the field. One of the players on my friend's group said, "Hey, did Matthew Broderick just steal your bat?" So my friend went to talk to him, but by the time he caught up with him he was heading into a bar with his friends and wife. When my friend asked for his bat back, apparently Mr. Broderick was embarassed and denied having it, and my friend decided to just let it go. As he was leaving the bar, one of Mr. Broderick's friends ran up to him and handed him the bat, saying, "Matt says he's sorry." And that's my story.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 5:32 AM on June 6, 2007


Sitting next to Brad Roberts at the passport office. Guy didn't even give me an autograph.
Did I ask? No.
posted by dreamsign at 7:54 AM on June 6, 2007


This post sucks AND the links are broken. (The food is terrible AND such small portions.)
posted by klangklangston at 8:39 AM on June 6, 2007


Actually, come to think of it, it was a mitt, not a bat. Not that it really changes anything.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 7:29 PM on June 6, 2007


The Globe and Mail reports the story. I scooped Matthew Ingram by, like, two weeks!
posted by GuyZero at 10:59 AM on June 20, 2007


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