Levi Johnston on practicing safe sex

Bristol Palin's ex makes an appearance on Monday's "Tyra Banks Show." Let the squirm-inducing questioning commence!

Topics: Tyra Banks, Broadsheet,

Levi Johnston and Bristol Palin may have split, but apparently he does not plan to cede the spotlight anytime soon. The proud redneck and hockey star that New York magazine once dubbed “sex on skates” sat down with Tyra Banks for an interview that will air on Monday. Johnston, sitting alongside his mother and sister, has traded in his trucker cap and Wranglers for some spiffy J. Crew duds. He looks different, as though he underwent a frat boy makeover.

Please avail yourself of the clip on Banks’ Web site, in which the talk show host grills him about whether Sarah Palin knew if he was having sex with her daughter (“I’m pretty sure she probably knew … moms are pretty smart”) and if the couple practiced safe sex.

“Yeah,” he responds, in a flat, utterly unconvincing way, like the kid who tells you he was not eating chocolate even as it is smeared all over his face.

“Even when the baby was conceived?” Tyra asks.

“We were.”

Banks persists. “And there were just … wardrobe malfunctions?”

“I guess.”

Oh come now, Levi. You did get the girl pregnant. Banks, disbelieving, continues to lean on him — even his sister is shaking her head beside him on the couch — until Johnston finally caves, saying, with a blush and a smirk, “Most of the time.”



Now that’s some quality television right there. Apparently the interview will also include discussions about the Republican National Convention and Levi’s famous ring-finger tattoo.

At the Salon office, the appearance sparked some spirited discussion, the underlying question being: Why would a kid, mercifully released from the media glare, submit to this kind of cringe-inducing scrutiny? (And how much did he get paid? And would he be making an appearance on Maury Povich anytime soon?) Your thoughts on those questions are welcome.

Sarah Hepola is an editor at Salon.

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