Ryan Lochte sits for an interview with NBC’s Matt Lauer, WHO IS NOT WEARING SOCKS. (Photo courtesy NBC)

Ryan Lochte, the American swimmer whose ugly bathroom incident did its best to hijack the Rio Olympics, sat down with NBC’s Matt Lauer for an interview that partially aired Saturday night. The idea was to kick off Lochte’s official apology tour and explain just what in the world he was thinking.

Predictably, there was outrage, and it was instantaneous. But it wasn’t outrage over what you’d think.

MATT LAUER WAS NOT WEARING SOCKS WITH HIS LOAFERS. Good Lord, we have another American crisis on our hands because the “Today” show host dared expose his vein-y and probably hairy kankles. (We averted our delicate eyes, frankly.)

If you glanced at the shot of the two of them, perhaps your first thought would be something like this: Wait, that guy who busted up a Rio restroom in an intoxicated blur was the dude on the left?

Now, this is a look embraced by plenty of fellows, including two former Washington Posties who now toil in obscurity on a top-rated ESPN show. Names rhyme with Dornheiser and Filbon. Still, they’d probably pull on socks for a big-deal interview.

Plenty of people were stunned — stunned! — Saturday by Lauer’s look. Never mind that it’s a common one for him during the summer.

“I have to scold a stupid man child on national television today. This is what I’ve become. [Expletive] wearing socks,” one person tweeted. Another pointed out: “Only thing worse than Matt not wearing socks was Ryan apologizing for his ‘tantics.’ Antics caused by a tool.”

Oh, the humanity.

Ryan Lochte told TV Globo Saturday, Aug. 20, that he exaggerated his story about being robbed at gunpoint in Rio. (Reuters)