Balloon Boy: We’ve all been taken for a ride

Like many other people, I was fixated on the news networks for much of yesterday afternoon, watching as the “Balloon Boy” supposedly flew through the sky, hoping like heck he would be OK.

Once you tuned in to yesterday's drama, it was impossible to tune out.

Once you tuned in to yesterday's drama, it was impossible to tune out.

Thankfully, the Balloon Boy (aka 6-year-old Falcon Heene of Fort Collins, Colo.) was OK. But last night, during an interview with Wolf Blitzer on “Larry King Live,” precocious little Falcon made what just might be the ultimate faux pas, suggesting it may have all been a publicity stunt.

(Note: I had posted all five segments of the Heenes’ “Wife Swap” episode from YouTube, but ABC yanked them all – save for this one below – a few hours later.)

And after sitting through an agonizingly unwatchable episode of ABC’s “Wife Swap” featuring the Heene family, I have little doubt that yesterday’s events were exactly that.

The Heenes – father Richard, wife Mayumi and their three sons, Ryo, Bradford and Falcon – were clearly mugging for the cameras the entire time. They came across as completely boorish, ill-behaved and offensive (with burping, farting and cursing amongst their favorite dinnertime activities).

Of course, ultimately Richard and Mayumi Heene are to blame for their children’s behavior. And it is obvious from watching “Wife Swap” that Richard eggs them on, encouraging their loathsome and repulsive actions.

After subjecting myself to this horrible episode (the final clip of which is below), I am convinced that little Falcon did not misspeak when he said to his dad, “You had said that we did this for a show,” during “Larry King Live.”

And that is why I take comfort that the “Balloon Boy” story ends with Falcon being safe and sound – and satisfaction in the fact that it was the tike who ratted his father out on national television.

Payback is a b*tch, isn’t it?

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