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Neesham issues apology for historical Twitter feed ‘dad jokes’

Neesham issues apology for historical Twitter feed ‘dad jokes’
By Dan Liebke • Issue #7 • View online
New Zealand cricketer Jimmy Neesham, long renowned for the sophisticated comedy and sharp wit that has made him a social media superstar, today posted an apology to his more than 265,000 Twitter followers. The statement of regret came after screenshots containing a chain of ‘dad joke’ tweets posted by him on the social media platform nine years ago began circulating.
In one uncovered tweet from late 2012, Neesham replied to a message from a fan saying ‘I am confident you’ll be picked for your T20 international debut soon’, with the groan-worthy response ‘Hi, Confident You’ll Be Picked For Your T20 International Debut Soon. I’m Jimmy.’

One of Neesham's many 'dad joke' tweets
One of Neesham's many 'dad joke' tweets
In another ill-considered tweet shortly after that debut, in which he was bowled by Robin Peterson for 10 (7), Neesham also posted a screenshot of his dismissal along with the caption, ‘BOWLED OVER by all the support for me in my first game for the Black Caps.’
The resurfaced tweets triggered an uproar on Twitter and the wider cricketing community. Many fans of Neesham reported their devastation at seeing such corny material from a man they’ve long considered Twitter’s funniest cricketer. “Dad jokes r DUD jokes!!!” tweeted @JofrasFishTank. “Is that a shot at New Zealand accents?” replied @McCullYUM69, before the conversation inevitably descended into both participants calling one another ‘facists’ [sic].
Others sprang to the all-rounder’s defence. “Thes tweets were made in his early 20’s,” said @SpelunkerKing1963. “Id hate to be judged by the dad joke tweets I made as a young man.”
Neesham has offered an unconditional apology for the tweets, admitting that he was ‘embarrassed’ by them. “I am embarrassed by the dad joke tweets that I posted over eight years ago, which have today become public,” Neesham said in a statement released on various social media platforms. “I want to make it clear that I’m not proud of these dad jokes, and deeply regret them. They were not made ‘ironically’ or ‘with a knowing wink’ as many of my supporters have suggested. They were genuine attempts at humour from a much younger man who still had much to learn about comedy,” he added.
“I am ashamed by my actions, but will learn from these mistakes,” Neesham went on to add. 
As a result of the surfacing of these tweets, New Zealand Cricket has announced that, effective immediately, Neesham will be reinstated to the New Zealand Test team. 
Behind The Scenes
Hope you enjoyed this week’s edition of my Monday First Drafts challenge, in which I take an idea from my big list of cricket ideas and spend a few hours working on a first draft prototype.
I’ve moved this behind-the-scenes discussion to the end of the newsletter, so people who just want to read the jokes can read the jokes without getting bogged down by my musings on the subject matter.
Post-Mortem on Last Week’s First Draft
Last week, I worked on a Mr Men version of Sandpapergate. I still think it’s a funny idea, but probably not anything I can use going forward. A one-off piece of nonsense.
Prospects for a more polished version: Highly unlikely. Come on. How much mileage is there in Mr Men parodies of cricket?
This Week’s First Draft
The Idea
This obviously sprang from Ollie Robinson’s recently discovered tweets. I was trying to think of a joke that I could make about them that didn’t wander too heavily into the unfunny areas of young men saying sexist and racist and otherwise generally unpleasant things.
At some point it occurred to me that the other kind of jokes that people might be offended by are jokes that are simply unfunny. More specifically, dad jokes. And then, to maximise the comedic contrast, who would we be most devastated to find wielding dad jokes? The very funny Jimmy Neesham, of course.
The piece wrote itself after that. Well, it didn’t write itself. I sweated a little over where to put the ‘dad jokes = dud jokes’ New Zealand accent bit (I also originally had ‘dead jokes’, because ‘dead’ is truer to the Kiwi accent). At one point, I attributed the quote to Neesham himself, playing with it being another dad joke he slipped up with in his apology. But that didn’t really make sense to the structure of the piece, so I eventually switched it to one of his (former) fans.
And then, finally, I was quite pleased with the last paragraph punchline. The idea that New Zealand would reinstate a player for telling dad jokes seemed just about perfect to me, and a neat reversal to the ECB’s response to Robinson.
Anyway, hope you enjoyed the piece. Subscribe to see what I throw up next Monday. (And follow @JimmyNeesh on Twitter.)
Did you enjoy this issue?
Dan Liebke

Every Friday, I go through my big list of cricket ideas, and churn out a first draft of something I've got in there. It won't be polished. It may not be interesting. I make no promises. But I'm going to throw something up and see what works and what (infinitely more likely) does not.

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