Mar 16, 2009, 2:22 PM EST
Watching Eastbound and Down lately, I can't help but myopicly wonder if the Kenny Powers character was in any way based on Lenny Dykstra or a combination of '93 Phillies. The look alone had me thinking of the NLCS. Then I read this story in GQ, in which a former employee details what it was like working for The Dude.
Tales of horrible money management (from a man putting out a magazine giving financial advice to athletes), racism, jokes about PED use, homophobia, harrassment, and just plain stealing from people fill the article, further sullying Dykstra's once miraculously resurrected image. The "Lenny" character almost seemed ficticious, in the over-the-top, dark comedic approach the HBO show takes. The author, Kevin Coughlin, describes a lonely, immature man hellbent on displaying his grandeur and trying to get people to admire him.
Lenny’s adolescent antics. Editorial “brainstorming sessions,” fueled
by Coca-Cola and ice cream sundaes, typically last until dawn. But this
does not mean things are getting done. Most meetings are simply
extended hang-out sessions, with Lenny cracking up at his own jokes or
asking us to watch the Real Sports segment over and over,
especially the moment where Lenny points to his seat on his private
plane and says, “This is where the Big Man sits.” He also seems to
relish letting go a long, leisurely fart for the amusement of his
employees or showing off his silk tie and saying, “You see this tie? I
paid $500 for it” as he rubs it on his crotch and laughs at our
There are far too many quotes to pick a few and give it justice. You really have to check out this guy's account.
For his part, in today's Inquirer, Dykstra denies Coughlin's account of his publication's financial trouble and that he made racist comments about the athletes featured on its cover.
Dykstra disputed the GQ article's claim that his magazine project is nearly defunct.
"We're not out of business," he said. "We're kicking ass. We're on our 11th issue."
Coughlin is now a photo editor at the New York Post. In the GQ
article, he writes of Dykstra using a racist term for African-American
athletes who have appeared on the cover of TPC. Coughlin also writes of
a time when Dykstra used a term that is considered offensive to refer
to a gay page designer.
"What else can this guy say to hurt me?"' Dykstra said. "It's all lies."
"I lived with Strawberry and Gooden," he said, referring to his
former New York Mets teammates, who are both black. "I'm not reducing
myself to this. What a crazy thing."
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