tv Rock Center With Brian Williams NBC June 7, 2012 10:00pm-11:00pm PDT
tonight on "rock center," kate snow reported on the concussion crisis in girls soccer. tonight her investigation of a product that promises to make players safer but might actually cause them to take greater risks. >> are the parents going to think this is going to protect my kid from a concussion? >> yes, and it won't. >> how many more concussions after you got the headband? >> five. >> just facebook. >> you may remember that guy from the social network. savannah guthrie connects with the real-life sean parker and his old partner in piracy, shawn fanning. >> you came across like a jerk. >> my character was a jerk. >> was there anything in it that
had the ring of truth? >> it absolutely was not an accurate portrayal. >> mary carillo takes us into the life of olympic hopeful oscar pistorius, raised to believe nothing could hold him back and now setting out to prove it to the entire world. >> this improbable inspirational journey is about to reach london. >> my brother put on his shoes and i put on my legs. >> there is a body, if you were running with this, you'd have a distinct advantage. >> i'd take that. >> and hers is among the great voices of our time. ♪ never mind i'll find someone like you ♪ >> tonight, adele sits down with matt lauer. >> what was the pinch-me moment of the year? >> i think the grammys. >> was that the most elegant version of adele up on stage that night? zbl>> spanx that night.
>> that and much more as "rock center" gets under way. captions paid for by nbc-universal television good evening and welcome to "rock center" and our new home on thursday nights where you can see us from now on. 50 days to go now until the london olympics. and going into every olympic games, we never quite know who the one athlete will be whose story will emerge above the others. one man vying for that notoriety this time around is oscar pistorius. he could be on the verge of making history as the first double amputee to qualify to run in the olympic games. he races, as you might have seen there, using prosthetic legs called cheetahs, and they have become an olympic saga in their own right to really understand what makes this man go, mary carillo recently traveled to south africa to the home of the sprinter known to some of his
fans as the blade runner. >> reporter: who would you be if you were born broken? who would you be if you never knew what it was like to walk on two feet? this is who oscar pistorius is. twice named one of "time's" 100 most influential people. one of the fastest 400-meter runners in the entire world. this is who oscar pistorius is. a made-in-heaven brand ambassador for nike. for oakley. for a french perfume with a futuristic message. this is who oscar pistorius is. a boy born broken raised to see himself not as disabled, just different. i love the story you tell in your book about being on the beach and you're making very different marks in the sand from the other kids. >> yeah, that was always
something for me, just running through the sand and i'd make these black holes around the beach. i remember saying something to my parents along the lines of my footprints are different. and they said no, they're just better. >> reporter: pistorius was borned with a condition. he had no fibulas. one of the two essential bones in the lower leg. and each of his feet was structurally deficient, narrow with only two toes. his parents, sheila and hank pistorius, were told years of reconstructive surgery might be largely ineffective. they chose the gut-wrenching but more hopeful alternative, amputate the legs of their infant below the knee. >> when i was 13 years old, i got my first pair of prosthetic legs. in the morning my mom said put on our shoes. i put on my prosthetic legs. that was the last time i thought any sort of disability.
>> a strong woman. >> this will always stick with me. it's not someone who gets involved and comes in last, but it's someone who doesn't get involved in the first place. all the rules were the same for the three of you? i mean, oscar had no legs, and he followed all the same rules? >> all the same rules. if we got flippers, he got flippers. if we went mountain climbers, rollerblades, roller skates, there was never any hesitation. it was a nonissue. >> reporter: at pretoria boys high, an elite prep school, pistorius, incredibly and inevitably, played rugby. the ultimate test of a south african boy's manhood. and the game nelson mandela used as social glue for a fractured country as portrayed in the movie "invictus."
former headmaster. >> he was heading when he was tackled and accidental by design, he left his legs behind and hopped out and scored and left his opponent with his legs in his hands. >> reporter: from the beginning, pistorius had surprisingly little regard for his means of locomotion. trevor brockman made oscar's very first pair of prosthetics and the many, many he's trashed ever since. so how many of those prosthetics did he go through as a kid? >> very many. >> reporter: you say that kind of -- you're tired just thinking about how often you had to fit him? >> he was good for business, but the problem is that as soon as we'd make them, he'd break them. that's actually a good thing because it shows he's using them. everybody worried that he's not use it.
>> reporter: while at pretoria boys high, two events would profoundly alter his life. one of them is the sudden death of his mother in 2002. >> i was 15 years old. and i think those times catch you on a whim. i don't think it's easy for anybody that's young to lose your parents. we're just more happy with the time that we spent than the time that was taken away. >> reporter: then a year after his mother died, he badly injured his left knee playing rugby, sandwiched between two tacklers he never saw. a charming dishonesty followed. oscar assumed he was running races for the coach to rehab for rugby. he, however, was secretly creating a sprinting star. did you lie to him? >> you can maybe say that. it wasn't a good lie. i did it -- i saw him, and i thought, this can work. the difference with me, i think, was that you train with my guy,
my able-bodied university guys, they never knew a disabled sport. >> reporter: at only 17, this accidental runner who never knew disabled sport was racing at the event that is at the pinnacle of the disabled sport, the paralympics 2004 in athens. i need to take you back because the photos are so pretty of what it was like for you in athens, your first paralympic experience. >> it was crazy. i had curly hair and braces. i remember lining up on the starting blocks. i didn't even know the athletes that were next to me. everything was new and overwhelming. >> reporter: so overwhelming for the teenager that in the semifinals of the 200 meters, the race began without him. >> what i didn't notice is that everybody psyched him out of the race. so he nearly missed the start and luckily jumped up and ran,
and he qualified. maybe his grin. >> reporter: after his career nearly blew up before it could start, oscar twice smashed the world record in athens. a year later, he began competing against able-bodied runners, illogical for a boy raised without any limitation. as soon as he became an olympic qualifier, he was suddenly suspected of being a cheat. like theories that his lightweight carbon fiber cheetahs transformed him into a sort of super speedy cyborg kangaroo. >> the better i was doing, the louder those critics would become. there had been people running on the exact same prosthetic leg that i'm using since 1996 and thousands of them. the way i figured, it was a huge advantage that these people are claiming, then why isn't
everybody using this prosthetic leg? >> reporter: you were too good. you had gotten too good. after exhausting tests over two days, the world governing body for track and field banned pistorius in january 2008 decided his cheetahs provided an unfair advantage. for a guy who is such a great admirer of sports and sportsmen, here's a guy who's essentially being accused of cheating. that must have hurt him more than anything. >> i knew my brother without a doubt, without hesitation, if he had any notion if that was, in fact, the truth, he wouldn't compete. that's not who he is. >> reporter: there is a body of thought that if you are running with this, you have a distinct advantage. tell me what you say to that. >> i say crap. >> reporter: it's crap?
>> i say it's crap because you've got an object. this thing will not run if somebody doesn't make it run. >> reporter: pistorius appealed to the court of arbitration for sport. his team of lawyers and scientists included professor hugh hare of m.i.t. >> many people mistakenly describe oscar's running prosthetics as bionic. they're not. they don't have sensors. they don't have musclelike a actuation or computational intelligence whatsoever. they're dumb. they're just a spring. my god. >> reporter: hare would know because he is, in fact, bionic. and what's the model you're wearing? >> i am wearing the latest and greatest turbo-charged guidevic. >> reporter: can you show me what you can do in them?
>> run in place. >> reporter: that's really cool! only months later, team pistorius decisively won its appeal. >> i think this day goes down in histo history. >> reporter: in this olympic year, this improbable, inspirational journey is about to reach london. >> cheers. >> reporter: cheers. >> bottoms up. >> reporter: and his level of sacrifice has only intensified, like downing dalily an awful shake. is my face turning as green as this? >> reporter: at the recent south african track and field championships, pistorius' relay team got victory. he knows what he represents here
in south africa. like mandela, he's keenly aware that sport can be a glue for what is still a fractured nation. >> he's my favorite. >> reporter: he's your favorite? why? tell me why? >> he's got a tender heart. >> reporter: you're not alone. a lot of people say that. it's not hyperbole to say that this boy, born broken, is changing the world. like spreading his special gospel of possibility during a sports outreach program in tanzania displaying so eloquently, so vividly that he's not disabled, just different. >> oscar's not broken. he's not broken. he's perfect. >> and he may be perfect, but he's not yet officially on the south african olympic team. actually, it will be a race here in new york city this weekend
that could help him qualify. it will be televised here on this nbc station saturday afternoon, 3:00 p.m. eastern. our thanks to our friend, mary carillo. coming up next here tonight, they were young turks of a new era called the internet. well, they're older now, and the question is, can they do it again? and then later in the broadcast, the parents of girls soccer players who contacted us after kate snow uncovered a concussion crisis in the sport. well, tonight where kate's cludatrertg whe somtoare g in including what some are touting as a solution. aflac! ha! isn't major medical enough? huh! no! who's gonna help cover the holes in their plans? aflac! quack! like medical bills they don't pay for? aflac! or help pay the mortgage? quack! or child care? quack! aflaaac! and everyday expenses? huh?! blurlbrlblrlbr!!! [ thlurp! ] aflac! [ male announcer ] help your family stay afloat at aflac.com. plegh!
and he didn't stop for three days and nights as he escaped life as a child soldier. twenty years later, he was still running, he just had a different thing driving him. every step of the way. ♪ visa. supporting athletes and the olympic games for 25 years. join our global cheer. cause we want to show them something new. you ready? let's go. walmart can now convert your favorite dvds from disc to digital. no way. if hulk smash disc... it's no big deal. now you'll never break them, scratch them or lose them. we can use that. you'll never break them. so what do you guys think? we love it. it's only two bucks per disc. that's cool. that's the walmart entertainment disc to digital service. bring in your favorite dvds to your local walmart photo center to get started. don't go in there. don't go in there. they don't listen.
as part of a heart healthy diet. that's true. ...but you still have to go to the gym. ♪ the one and only, cheerios welcome back. here are two names from the not-so-distant past, sean parker and shawn fanning. they nearly took down the funding structure of the modern music industry as we know it with napster, the file-sharing service. then parker got in on the ground floor of facebook. now these two friends say
they've seen the future again. savannah guthrie reports on the next thing to come from sean and shawn. >> i'm sean parker. >> how do you do? >> reporter: you just might think of sean parker as this guy. >> i founded napster. >> sean parker founded napster. >> nice to meet you. >> reporter: the flashy net entrepreneur played by justin timberlake in "the social network," the blockbuster film about facebook's early days. >> just facebook. >> reporter: this is the real sean parker. justin timberlake plays a sean parker who is greedy, slick, manipulative, betrays a friend. >> that character in the film is a bad person. i mean, i'm appalled watching -- watching the film. and i'm appalled by his character's behavior. >> reporter: you come across by a jerk. >> that casualty was a jerk. >> reporter: parker and his once and again business partner, shawn fanning, say the real guy
is nothing like that. was there anything in it that had the ring of truth? >> it was absolutely not an accurate portrayal. >> reporter: we caught up with sean and shawn in parker's $20 million new york town house, a long way from their first encounter in high school on the internet. >> we were probably 16 or 17. we met online. so meeting online through chat, you get to know someone really well in terms of what's going on. there's almost no filter between what's going on. you get to kind of hear the inside voice. >> reporter: as teenagers, fanning and parker founded napster, a site that lets users swap music files for free, a revolutionary platform that now looks primitive. but back then turned the recording industry upside down. in 2000 at 19, fanning was on the cover of "time" and napster had tens of millions of users. and very powerful enemies. record companies sued for copyright infringement and won. the burgeoning site was shut
down. here you have this company. you developed the software. it works. it's popular. and it fails. >> it's interesting because it was the only example of a consumer internet company that got to 50 million users. >> 80 million. >> and then failed. every other company that managed to pull that off became a multibillion-dollar company. >> reporter: after napster's collapse, sean parker more than landed on his feet at still another groundbreaking venture, facebook. widely credited with helping mark zuckerberg turn a dorm room business into a big business, he was the first president but pushed out. he left with a piece of the company now worth upwards of $2 billion. by every objective measure, i don't think the facebook ipo went as they probably hoped. what do you think went wrong? >> well, i don't think anybody necessarily went wrong. in a sense, what happened the first day of trading was that a lot of those retail investors
who were pouring in got spooked and abandoned the stock. so that doesn't look good in the short term, but i think it has the right long-term effect. >> reporter: i assume you might have lost a few hundred million dollars on paper, anyway. >> it's not even real money to me in the first place. it's paper wealth. if i were to focus on the, you know, ups and downs of the stock, it would be like this emotional roller coaster. my belief in the company from the very beginning has been in the product, belief in mark, belief in the team. >> reporter: now he's teamed up with his first partner again and the two are trying to shake up silicon valley one more time. >> the internet has become incredibly boring. you never have an unexpected experience, and people have lost sight of the power of technology to change the world. >> reporter: so for the last two years in a nondescript hideaway
in san francisco, they've been planning the next big thing. unveiled this week, it's called airtime. as one blog put it, the kickoff filled with celebrities had glitz and glitches. >> we're going to be really upset if snoop doesn't pick up this call. >> oh! technical difficulties. >> reporter: airtime is now up and running more smoothly. and nbc is one of the outlets providing content. the site enables users to chat on webcams with facebook friends. and the real innovation, the ability to interact, watch and share content together live. it's funny, you two met on the internet. and in some ways this sounds like you're trying to recreate that moment of connection that you had. >> absolutely. also finding someone who plays guitar and, you know, collaborating in some way or going on to explore an area of interest or talk about, you know, something that's going on currently. >> reporter: you could dismiss it as just another internet start-up. then again, the last time these
two guys worked together, they almost took down the recording industry. >> sean and i, i think, having both been through that experience, we're not content just to build a company to make money. >> so savannah guthrie here with us. and you touched on this. when they first did something, it was a new something. this, as you point out, is an existing medium. so you can watch video of a llama with 12 of your best friends. other than that, what's the big deal with airtime? >> well, they would say that is something that's not available. there's facetime, there's skype, yes, we can talk via webcam, but the classic example is a youtube video. you send it to somebody. why? because you want to get their reaction. they say this service will actually enable you to see their reaction live in realtime. it's not just the silly llama videos but maybe baby videos you could share with a relative. they think that really opens up chat. and it's more accountable because it comes through your facebook profile.
>> i'm making a note of that for baby videos in the future. now, what do you think age -- and it's still relative -- age has done to these two guys? >> they're wiser and wealthier, let's be honest. but honestly, what i was really struck by, they still seem like those two teenagers who met in an internet chat room. they really want to unlock the potential of the internet to change the world and make us relate to each other more. so often we think about the web as isolated, you're sitting in a dark room, on a computer not making eye contact, and yet they think they can unleash this potential and they still have this dream. they're almost romantic about the potential the internet has to bring us closer together. >> point well taken. savannah, always a pleasure having you. thank you. interesting conversation. we'll take a break. when we come back, matt lauer and adele and how it feels to be called the voice of a generation. we're testing new degree, the only antiperspirant activated directly by movement.
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the volkswagen passat. that's the power of german engineering. welcome back. if the beautiful song by adele "rolling in the deep" is indeed the break-up song of the decade, what must her back story be like? she has been called the most powerful emerging voice of the decade. and she has millions of dedicated fans around the world. matt lauer recently spent time with her for the special "adele live in london," and it turns out this complex, down-to-earth
woman harbors a lot of surprises in addition to the voice. ♪ you could have had it all ♪ rolling in the deep ♪ you had my heart and soul ♪ in your hands ♪ but you played it ♪ you played it played it ♪ you played me to the beat >> well, look who's playing royal albert hall. >> yeah. >> i mean, can you describe the moment? >> yeah. it had me in complete shivers. it was a moment i'll never forget. it felt really special. ♪ but i set fire to the rain ♪ watched it pour >> it was really just a fitting part of this year you've had. >> yeah. >> what was the pinch-me moment of the year? >> i think the grammys was the pinch-me moment of my life, really. it's going to be up there in the top moments of my life ever. i'm still young.
i've got so many other things to do. i doubt i'll ever achieve anything like that. >> were you comfortable? did you like the way you looked? >> i passed out in it. it had a corset. >> can you sing with four pairs of spanx off? >> i took a couple of pairs off. >> there's only two, a maximum of two pairs to actually sing? >> yes. ♪ chasing pavement ♪ should i just keep on chasing pavement ♪ >> one thing our viewers tonight will not see, perhaps i should say will not hear a lot of -- >> my foul language. >> my foul mouth. >> it's this juxtaposition. there you are in this beautiful dress singing these beautiful songs. and here come the f-bombs. >> i know.
i think i'm not going to swear. i'm going to be really good. and i walked on stage and the second word i said was a swear word. >> royal albert [ bleep ] hall. >> i'm not going to swear. it took four seconds. >> i know, awful, awful. >> it seems so right that someone who changed my life so dramatically, and the song that is about him is so brutally about him and then a record that is about him would change my life as much as he has and now he's forevered changed my life. and i'm proud of that. i'm not bitter about that. i'm proud of it. ♪ i heard ♪ that you're settled down ♪ that you've found a girl ♪ and you're married now >> do you ever feel as if you've given up too much information at this stage in your career? >> yeah. >> you do? >> yeah, i do. >> would you like to take some
of it back? >> yeah. i mean, it's hard because i really do wish -- there's been lots of stories of the papers trying to out who my ex-boyfriend is. they're just my friends. it's really intrusive on their life. i do. i do wish i'd kept a lot of things to myself. also, i never knew the album was going to be so big. >> if your exes were to write songs, what would they sound like? >> [ bleep ] [ bleep ]. >> for those of you watching at home, what she just said was -- >> no, i'd be mortified. ♪ never mind i'll find someone like you ♪ ♪ i wish nothing but the best for you ♪ ♪ don't forget me out there ♪ i remember you say ♪ sometimes you last in love
>> it's one thing to be the most talked-about singer in the world right now. do you want to be the most talked-about singer in the world ten years from now? >> no. i just want to make music. i don't care what anyone's chatting about me. i mean, i still hope i have a little bit of cloud in ten years. but all i ever wanted to do is sing. ♪ sometimes it hurts instead ♪ yeah yeah >> our thanks to matt lauer and the magnificent adele. one more thing, "billboard" magazine says it expects her album "21" to return to number one position on the charts next week thanks in large part to the special "adele live in london." this would mark 24 weeks at the top for adele's album, and that would be the longest run since prince and "purple rain" back in the day in 1984. up next here tonight, kate
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welcome back. right after kate snow reported here on "rock center" about the frightening problems of concussions in girls soccer, we heard from a lot of parents of players worried about their daughters' safety. and we heard from a page e make soccer headgear saying his product could help. so kate decided to put his claims to the test largely because the stakes are high here. only boys football has more reported concussions. and so many people are just now realizing girls soccer is every bit a contact sport. >> reporter: natasha helmick was a soccer superstar. her raw talent obvious very early on. you were good. >> i was pretty good.
>> reporter: you were out there as a 4-year-old trapping the ball, turning it. >> heading it, too. yeah, i headed the ball. >> get it, baby! >> reporter: youth soccer turned to club soccer. she even made the olympic development team in texas, but then at 12, a shattering moment. >> i went up for a header, and a girl came from my left side. and she just speared me in my temple with her head. it just hit me hard. and i went down. and i got up and i looked up. and from my left eye, i couldn't see out of my left eye. everything was black. >> reporter: that was your first concussion? >> yes, that was my very first one. i didn't even know what it was at the time. >> reporter: that was eight years ago, well before the wave of concussion awareness in sports. her parents, micki and bob, awee on the sidelines. >> reporter: how worried were you? >> very worried. >> reporter: so worried that micki went online in search of an answer. >> i think i probably just googled head protection for
soccer players. but i just remember seeing that it helps protect against head injuries, lessons, impact. and i thought, this is something i need to get for my daughter. >> reporter: it was headgear being worn by players of all ages, half a million sold online and from sporting goods stores. the headband cost between $25 and $45 and promises soccer players they can stay in the game and reduce the probability of a concussion by over 50%. >> the benefit of wearing our headgear is that it significantly reduces the impact forces reaching your head. >> reporter: jeff skeen is the man behind full 90 sports. he says he's had more than 20 concussions himself riding motorcycles and playing sports. he came up with the headband after his own daughter suffered concussions playing soccer. >> i thought to myself, well, there's a simple biomechanical solution to that.
and that is put something soft in between the two hard objects that are going to hit each other. so i decided to make her just a padded headband. >> reporter: just for her? >> just for her. >> reporter: soon other players wanted them, and ten years ago, skeen went into business. that's it, right? >> this is it. pretty old. kind of got sweat on it right here. when i saw it, i was just, like, anything to prolong my career is what i was thinking. so if this is going to help me, i'll wear it. >> reporter: did you ever go on the field without the headband? >> no. even to go kick the ball around with my friends, i always brought it. >> reporter: natasha says the headband made her feel like she could play more aggressively. so you're out there, i mean, you're sure you were playing harder because you were wearing the headband. >> oh, yeah. i had that extra boost of confidence. i was ready to go. i went out there and played so much harder. >> my problem with the headbands is that they're primarily marketed as a concussion reduction device. that is something that there is
no proof that they are. >> reporter: dr. bob cantu, a neurosurgeon and leading concussion researcher, also serves as vice president of the organization that approves football helmets. >> i think the first thing you see is that it's very thin. it's less than a half inch in thickness. and the second thing is just with my thumb and my finger, i can make it bottom out. i can squeeze it. so you can understand that you can't take a very hard blow without this bottoming out. when it bottoms out, it's providing no protection at all. >> reporter: we called a dozen other top concussion experts, and they all agreed that while the full 90 may protect against cuts and bruises, there's no convincing evidence to support the claim it reduces the risk of concussions. how many more concussions after you got the headband? >> five, at least. yeah, five that i went to the doctor for.
>> reporter: at least five concussions wearing the full 90 headband. >> yes. >> reporter: one of natasha's agonizing concussions was actually caught on tape. >> oh! >> yes, this girl right behind me, she hits me in the back of my head, the lower part of my head near my neck. >> oh! >> reporter: you see my head jostle forward. i leaned -- >> reporter: and you grab your head. >> yes. i grab my head. i lean down. i don't really remember, but i just remember hearing singing. i just remember holding my head. and i'm just grimacing in pain. and i'm just hurting so bad. you were putting a lot of faith in something you researched online. >> exactly. and i think that's probably -- looking back in hindsight, we realized that to put that much emphasis on a product to help protect our daughter from concussions really didn't pan out. didn't work. >> reporter: but the maker of the full 90 says it does protect
the player in a head-to-head hit. >> i can't look at you eye to eye and say that's going to eliminate all soccer concussions. but what i can tell you is that i believe that it reduces the risk by about 50%. >> reporter: when we called 12 docto doctors, the leading doctors in their field across the country, a dozen of them, they said we're sorry, but there's not enough scientific evidence that headbands reduce the probability of a concussion. >> i think they're right. there is not enough evidence. i'd like there to be more evidence. and that's what i want. i want indisputable evidence. i'm here to try to reduce head injuries, not sell products. >> reporter: is it legitimate for you to be putting all these claims on your website and having moms and dads read all this material that indicates that it does make a difference when there really isn't the evidence there? >> no, you've got that wrong, kate. i hate to completely and totally disagree, every claim that we're making is indeed accurate. >> reporter: on their own packaging, it says "reduces
typical impact forces by up to 50%." >> yes. this was a study that they paid for. they did in their own laboratories. it's a nonpeer-reviewed study. >> reporter: every parent's going to think this is going to protect my kid from the concussions that we've been hearing about. >> yes, and it won't. >> dr. cantu is one of the smartest people i know. i would not challenge what he was saying. i would just say bob, you have not been in a laboratory. come to a laboratory and let's show you some benefits. >> reporter: this is your lab that you're talking about, right? or a lab that you hired? >> we'll use any lab. have them use any other lap they want. >> reporter: on the box, we bought one in new jersey, on the back, it says "reduces typical impact forces by up to 50%." >> that's correct. we stand absolutely by everything that it says. >> reporter: natasha says she's had so much damage from her concussions, it can be hard for her to read. look what happened when we handed her the full 90 box.
>> right there. "this is typical" -- >> reporter: here. "reduces typical impact forces by up to 50%." >> is that a joke? i feel like that's false information, honestly. you know. i don't feel like this protected me 50% at all. >> reporter: and experts we spoke to fear there may be an unintended consequence of wearing the headband. >> the individual has this false sense of security that now the headband's going to protect them so they can play. >> reporter: you would think it would be the opposite. you would think that they're wearing the headband, and therefore they're protected. but you're saying they're actually at more risk. >> they're at more risk because they're playing with greater abandon. >> i was praying that you'd bring up the aggressive play argument.
if you look at ski helmets, the ski area operators were against ski helmets because they said skiers are going to ski faster and more recklessly. >> reporter: you think it's a bogus argument. in fact, on your we are site, you call it a myth. >> yes. and i believe it is a myth. >> reporter: even the players he introduced us to showcase his product said otherwise. >> i can be aggressive and do the things i want without the risk of getting a concussion. >> that's good. aggressive. >> reporter: for natasha, there's no more soccer. her playing days are over. all those years you're wearing the headband, do you think it's protecting you? >> i thought so, yeah. but that wasn't the case. >> as long as the individual understands what the headband can do and can't do, i don't have any problem with the person wearing a headband. but if they think that that headband is going to protect them against significant concussion, they're wrong, and that's the danger. >> so kate snow, false sense of
security argument aside, there's equipment in life, and there's big volvos you can drive around. there's also things you can do to your vessel, to your body to strengthen you, again, equipment aside, for this game. >> right. and actually, one point i really want to make because i think parents are going to walk away from this going, then what do i do? here's what you can do, neck-strengthening exercises. it sounds silly but girls doing more to strengthen their neck muscles, dr. cantu says, makes more difference than any product out there. we have an instructional video for that on our website. also there's a test you can take now, a baseline test you can give to a girl when she's healthy and see where the brain activity is. if she has a concussion, go back and test her again, doctors use that to figure out when you're healthy to go into the game. like an ekg for the heart. >> my high school coach was maniacal about stretching. he thought it was the key to everything. any update on natasha? >> a couple years ago she went to college.
she's gone back home. she found college to be academically rigorous for her but she's doing better and surrounded by her family and going to community college. >> great piece of reporting. kate snow, thank you. up next, will they change the inscription on the statue of liberty? a steakover! this is perfect. the meat is really good. one of the best filets i've had. see look how easy that is to cut. these are perfectly aged for flavor and tenderness. you're eating walmart steaks. shut up... is that right? the best steak i'd ever had... i would definitely go to walmart and buy steaks. walmart choice premium steak in the black package. try it. it's one hundred percent satisfaction guaranteed. a dad will get a screening. ♪ a little one will get a vaccine. and a teen will talk with the doc. ♪ right now, millions of americans are using their preventive benefits from the health care law. you can, too.
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there was a full-page ad in the new york papers a few days back, and it read, "we need a mayor, not a nanny." as we shed some light here tonight on a few of the stories that have been floating around this past week, we begin with the beverage drama in the big apple which some worry is an attempt to take the fun out of fun city. >> reporter: the big story here in new york this week, the exodus of cars on the bridges and tunnels to new jersey where you can still buy a large sugary drink. new york city mayor michael bloomberg announced a proposed ban on large sugary drinks. as the mayor correctly points
out, americans are too fat. more than one-third of americans are obese, and the obesity rate is skyrocketing. while there's no disputing the facts and while the right to a big gulp is not enumerated in the constitution, bloomberg has already banned smoking just about everywhere. then he banned transfats, mandatory posted nutritional information long ago took any fun out of eating poorly, and restaurants now have a glaring letter grade in the window based on their last inspection. so as some new yorkers see it, a little bit of freedom and liberty died this week. not helping the mayor's case was the fact that two days later he presided over doughnut day in the city. then new york's governor announced he wants to decriminalize marijuana possession for small amounts. so you could think of it this way. it's possible to get gooned on weed, then plow through a dozen doughnuts. but if you try to wash it down with a mountain dew the size of
a kiddie pool, then you've run afoul of the law. bloomberg has apparently put off discussion on a plan to levy a tax on tea. >> cancel golf today. >> reporter: let's talk about the new iphone commercials. they're designed to show off the wonders of siri, the ultimately unnoticeable iphone 4s with the ready answer to any question no matter how ridiculous which brings us back to those commercials. >> is that rain? >> reporter: as you watch them, remember, this from the nation that won world war ii. >> let's get it delivered. >> reporter: the always delightful and quirky zooey deschanel exhausted standing in her pajamas next to a window shares her desire for tomato soup and then just declares the day a total loss. >> today we're dancing. >> reporter: it gets better. enter john malkovich, surrounded by museum-quality art, classical music, a suit, no socks and no clue. >> weather. joke.
>> reporter: it is possible this is how the ottomans looked right before the fall of their empire. in real life, we said good-bye to some greats in the past few days. just today bob welch died of an apparent suicide. music fans know him as an early member of fleetwood mac whose solo career included the song "sentimental lady." ray bradbury died this week, the godfather of modern science fiction. richard dawson who became famous in a comedy about a world war ii p.o.w. camp, then went on to kiss all the female contestants as a game show host. kathryn joosten who played the beloved mrs. landingham, the president's secretary on "the west wing." and dick beals who because of a glandular problem always sounded like a kid, even as an adult. so he put it to good use, playing the voice of speedy the alka seltzer boy and gumby.
>> really? >> reporter: and eduard khil has died. he was the russian singer who years later haunted our dreams because of this gloriously bad cult classic youtube clip, performing the song with the admittedly catchy title, "i am glad because i am returning back home." ♪ he doesn't sing a single lyric because back then in the soviet era, he feared the words might be considered pro-american. while the soviets did allow people to look at the right camera, he apparently chose not to. ♪ eduard khil, the man with the golden voice and matching tie was 77. and as we bid farewell to all, a word here about next week's broadcast and a special story from dr. nancy snyderman. this is about a parent's fight to save her dying daughter and being willing to go against the medical establishment and go
against the law and a provocative question this mom raises borne of desperation, wouldn't more lives be saved if donors could be paid for their bone marrow? that's just part of next week's broadcast. and thank you for joining us this week as we settle into what will be our new permanent home thursday nights. i'm brian williams. i hope, as always, you can join us tomorrow evening from this very studio for "nbc nightly news." for now, for everyone here, that is it for us in new york. your late local news begins now. for now, for everyone