Monday, January 16, 2017

RIP Gene Cernan

Great man. One of the astronauts I idolized as a boy. The last man to walk on the moon. And without question, the best singer the surface of the moon has ever heard...

Hilarious

This is just funny...funny is funny.

The Cubs are in the House

The White House...





SNL Takes on Trump

I didn't watch it on Saturday night, but I did see this tweet today, which made me go back and watch it.



Some pretty funny stuff here. Thanks Mr. Trump for the reminder...

Martin Luther King Day

I post this song from Tom Clay every year on MLK day. It seems more appropriate than ever these days...

Bobby Skafish in Hillside

Thanks to everyone who came out to the Chicagoland Record Show in Hillside yesterday. Bobby Skafish got a chance to meet a lot of fans and sell lots of books to people who were really passionate about the music. It was like being in the world's greatest record store. I'm just happy I didn't bring more money with me. I walked out with a stack full of wax.

Chicago Writers Association Awards

Really enjoyed myself at the Chicago Writers Association Book of the Year Awards. Our very own Pat Colander (Non-fiction book of the year) and Randy Richardson (Special Recognition) were given awards. Well deserved! Proud of them both.

A Transition in Attitude

Friday, January 13, 2017

Typing Joke

Not sure if the youngsters will get this one...

Arrive Early! Seats Fill Up Fast

Getting Ready for Inauguration Day

Thanks to "DR" for this one...















My old boss Dave Logan also weighs in...


Everyone Loves Michelle

Seriously...I'm gonna miss these two.

The Future of Mike & Mike

Mike Greenberg and Mike Golic have been an ESPN Radio team for nearly twenty years.

Radio Ink suggests that will change soon, with Greenberg going to television.

Nothing has been announced officially about the future of the radio show.

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Minutia Men, Episode 34


EP34 – Rick and Dave discuss colons, Trump tweets, Jenkins making a bad choice, a Cub on Rick’s street, and Rick’s brush with Harrison Ford

Listen to it here.

My Weekend Plans



I'll be there on Saturday night to see Eckhartz Press author Pat Colander pick up her "Book of the Year Award" from the Chicago Writer's Association at the Book Cellar in Chicago.

Come on out for a fun night.

Details here.


Bobby Skafish will appearing at the Chicagoland Record Collector Show in Hillside this Sunday, January 15th from 8:45-Noon, and I'll be there too.

Click here for more information about the show.

Bobby will be selling and signing copies of his acclaimed new Eckhartz Press book "We Have Company: Four Decades of Rock and Roll Encounters"

Ratings for Obama's Farewell Address


These are pretty big numbers: 34 million people tuned in. Five of them were in my house. I made the whole family watch it. I will never understand the hatred some people feel for this classy man and his classy family. I will miss him.

Score Shuffles Lineup

From Tom Taylor's NOW column...

Chicago’s “Score” WSCR/670 re-works the lineup after the retirement of 25-year personality Terry Boers. CBS Radio programmer Mitch Rosen’s moving Jason Goff from middays to PM drive, alongside Dan Bernstein. They’ll work 1pm-6pm. New to 9am-1pm middays with Matt Spiegel is newly-hired Danny Parkins. Chicago native Parkins left town in 2010 and has been anchoring afternoon drive for Entercom’s sports KCSP/610 in Kansas City (which means he’s been through some historic highs with the MLB Royals). His last day in K.C. is tomorrow, and he punches the timeclock in Chicago next Tuesday. Mornings on the Score continue to be Mike Mulligan and Brian Hanley (“Mully and Hanley”), and Laurence Holmes does 6pm-10pm. WSCR truly did score last year with the World Series-winning MLB Cubs – in the station’s first year with the team.

It's Real Now

Last night while we all slept, the Senate passed a budget resolution that is the first step towards killing Obamacare. One Senator attempted to add a provision keeping the pre-existing conditions ban (something President-Elect Trump promised to keep over and over again). It was voted down.

My 21-year-old son with a pre-existing condition is about to live in a country in which he will never be able to obtain private medical insurance. Ever.

Sanity

During his press conference the President Elect called CNN "Fake News" and belittled a reporter from there, while taking a question from an actual "fake news" website Breitbart. He conflated the BuzzFeed leak with the well-sourced CNN report. Fox News was all over CNN and "the mainstream media" yesterday, who did absolutely nothing wrong. But there was one voice of sanity...

Memes

I know it's wrong, but this whole story has a Clinton cigar, Dick-Cheney-Shoots-His-Friend-In-The-Face comedy gold type of feeling to me. I've never wanted to flex those old comedy writing muscles more...



Here's another good one...

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Monica Crowley Plagiarism

This is another big scandal. President Trump's nominee for strategic communications at the National Security Council is having her book pulled by Harper Collins because portions of it were determined to be plagiarized.

TV Newser has the details.

Fox News Quietly Settled Sexual Harrassment Case for Bill O'Reilly

This is not the famous "lufa" case from a decade or so ago. This is a new one that allegedly occured in 2011,featuring Former Fox News anchor/reporter Juliet Huddy.

Sounds like that Fox Newsroom was no picnic for women over the past few decades.

Biggest Story Ever or Completely Untrue?

What a bombshell last night. I think it's important to take a breath on the Trump story about being personally (pee perversion) and financially (Russian money) compromised, and the story about his campaign allegedly co-ordinating with Wikileaks during the campaign (which would be impeachable--immediately) until we let legitimate reporters and investigators vet the story. Right now it's pretty unsubstantiated. If its true, he's a goner. But it could be another example of fake news.

Of course for comedy purposes, I think he'll understand my stance on this. I will absolutely believe this Trump story... Unless he produces his long-form pee certificate.

Here's a smattering of the tweets flying around last night...







Tuesday, January 10, 2017

You Can't Make This Stuff Up

See below. It was also used for McCarthy hearings, Teapot Dome hearings (the last time a Cubs owner was part of a presidential administration), and Wall Street banking hearings during the Great Depression. Sounds about right...

U2 Delays Release of Album Because of Trump

From The Hill...

The album was "pretty much complete," and then the election happened and "suddenly the world changed."

“We just went, ‘Hold on a second – we’ve got to give ourselves a moment to think about this record and about how it relates to what’s going on in the world,'" the guitarist said.

I have friends who get very upset when artists like the Edge (and Meryl Streep) express their political opinions. I get that it bums them out when their favorite musicians or artists so strongly disagree with them. It bummed me out when Cubs pitcher Jake Arietta tweeted that he would personally drive every celebrity out of the country when Trump won. It will probably make me look at him a little differently when he pitches for the Cubs next year.

But that's the point, really. These celebrities are taking a big risk when they speak out. They are potentially hurting their own brands and their own profitablity by upsetting half the country. They know that. They do it anyway because they feel very strongly about whatever they are speaking out about.

It's called the free market. The free marketplace of ideas can lead to the free marketplace of money leaving their pockets. If it bugs you that much, that's the appropriate way to respond. Telling them they can't speak out is ridiculous.

A celebrity named Trump certainly didn't hold back his beliefs before he became a politician.

RIP Marty Zivin

I never met Marty Zivin, but I corresponded with him many times over the past thirty years. He was a radio guy, inside and out. It's been pretty obvious to his facebook friends (I was one of them) that this day was approaching. Marty posted as often as he could, and didn't hold back with statements of despair and grief. It's a real bummer that he's gone.

Robert Feder has the details.

Ben Fights Back

I did notice that Casey Affleck failed to thank his big brother Ben during his Golden Globes acceptance speech. Ben got back at him on Jimmy Kimmel.

Overrated?

Colbert hits back at the thin-skinned man about to become president.

Media Watchdogs

Who will be keeping an eye on the media from the 115th Congress? Tom Taylor's NOW newsletter has the names...

The 115th Congress begins to organize itself, and Tennessee Republican Rep. Marsha Blackburn rises to chair the House Telecom Subcommittee. She’s from the Nashville area and has shown interest in issues important to the music community. Blackburn succeeds former Oregon radio station owner Greg Walden as chair of a subcommittee where she’s shown herself to be a sharp questioner of witnesses. New Jersey Republican Rep. Leonard Lance is the new Vice Chair. Greg Walden now has the seniority to chair the full Energy & Commerce Committee, succeeding Michigan’s Fred Upton. Broadcasting & Cable’s John Eggerton has the rest of the Telecom Subcommittee, chosen by Walden – John Shimkus (from Illinois), Steve Scalise (Louisiana), Bob Latta (Ohio), Brett Guthrie (Kentucky), Pete Olson (Texas), Adam Kinzinger (Illinois), Gus Bilirakis (Florida), Bill Johnson (Ohio), Billy Long (Missouri), Bill Flores (Texas), Susan Brooks (Indiana), Chris Collins (NY), Kevin Cramer (ND), Mimi Walters (California) and Ryan Costello of Pennsylvania. Reps. Walters, Costello, Brooks and Flores are new to the subcommittee.

Monday, January 09, 2017

I thought he might be dead

Hard to believe he returned to the game just one play later. No way would I have let him back out there.

Bobby Skafish in Hillside

Bobby Skafish will appearing at the Chicagoland Record Collector Show in Hillside this Sunday, January 15th.

Click here for more information about the show.

He'll be selling and signing copies of his acclaimed new Eckhartz Press book "We Have Company: Four Decades of Rock and Roll Encounters"

KSHE

I first heard of the radio station KSHE when I was in college in Champaign. I was working at WPGU and a former WPGU employee came to speak to us. He was the program director of KSHE; Rick Balis. Rick later became my boss at the Loop in Chicago, before returning to KSHE.

I mention this because Rick and KSHE are in the news today, courtesy of the RAMP Newsletter...


KSHE 95/St. Louis was one of the very first radio stations to play rock music on the FM band, and now, almost 50 years after its November 1967 birth, KSHE is the longest-running rock station in the world. Today, in honor of its half-century of excellent service to the Rock format, KSHE launches "The KSHE 50th Anniversary Real Rock Museum" at kshe95.com.

KSHE PD Rick Balis said, "So many talented people have contributed, throughout our 50 years, to make KSHE 95 what it is today. It's actually amazing. More amazing, though, is the incredible listeners that we have had and have today. It's rare. And, we cherish those relationships. The relationships are 'generational' -- grandparents, their kids and the kids of those kids are listeners today." Balis added, "The KSHE 50th Anniversary Real Rock Museum is a tribute to both the contributors and the listeners."

Congrats to Rick and KSHE for this achievement.

Book of the Year!



I'll be there on Saturday night to see Eckhartz Press author Pat Colander pick up her "Book of the Year Award" from the Chicago Writer's Association at the Book Cellar in Chicago.

Come on out for a fun night.

Details here.

Championship droughts

This is a great point. I was thinking this too during the Detroit Lions game on Saturday night...

Praise for "Monkey in the Middle"

Of all the books we've published, I think "Monkey in the Middle" has the most potential as a movie...and I'm not just saying that because Dobie and I have actually written the screenplay.

This review of the book came in the other day from Nate Weatherup...

So two months ago Dobie Maxwell gave me a copy of his book Monkey in the Middle to bring back to LA for a mutual friend and I told him I would, on the condition that I got to read it first (once an English teacher...).

Dobie is a Milwaukee native and longtime Chicago comic. He's one of the first professional comedians I ever met - he hosted my first audition showcase at Zanies in September 2009 - and was definitely the first to ever compliment me on my act and encourage me to keep at it. I've always respected him as a comic and as a mentor, so I just thought it would be fun to read his story, and find out just where Mr. Lucky got his roots.

I got about 70 pages in before life became life and I ran out of free time. I picked it back up two days ago and burned through the last 300 pages about as fast as I've ever read anything.

This book is phenomenal!

It is an incredible, almost unbelievable (unless you know Dobie), story told by a master storyteller: it's compelling, it's unpredictable, and it's laugh out loud funny and emotionally devastating simultaneously. It is straight-shooting honesty and unapologetically flawed. It's Dobie in paperback.

It's the most I've enjoyed reading a book in a very long time (and again, English teacher, I read an awful lot of books).

Go get this book. Do it. Do it now. (Click here)

I have one recommendation before reading it, however - go see his show first. And I say that for three reasons:
1) after seeing the show you'll say "ah, that makes sense," about every three pages.
2) reading the book with Dobie's distinct, Wisconsin, doesn't-give-a-rats-ass voice in your head just makes it that much more enjoyable.
3) it's just a damn good show.

Thanks, Dobie, for the years of kind words and advice, and for one hell of and amazing read.

The Golden Globes

Her line about the Hollywood Foreign Press being most hated in the country was funny. "We are Hollywood, we are foreigners, and we are the press." Good job. The speech against Trump, however, will get her in some trouble with half the country...



But to me, Steve Carrell and Kristen Wiig were the highlight of the night...

Clemson or Bama?

I was almost certainly going to root for them anyway, but this clinches it for me.

The coach of Clemson replicated the mood and vibe of the Chicago Cubs clubhouse this year.

Go Clemson!

Friday, January 06, 2017

An Unexpected Ally in the Anti-Media Consolidation World

Long time readers of this blog know that I've been a crusader against further media consolidation. I wrote my first novel ($everance) about the damage and ridiculousness that ensued after the previous consolidation, and I've been a tireless advocate of anyone who helps promote this same cause.

Today I found out something that I'm having a hard time processing. The Time Warner/AT&T merger that has been proposed, and which I assumed would sail through now that the Republicans will once again control the FCC, has an important enemy.

If the enemy of my enemy is my friend, I have a VERY unexpected new friend.

Would you believe it's Donald J. Trump? Variety has the news.

Showing his fingers

The man who famously dubbed Trump a "short fingered vulgarian" is meeting with Trump today.

Graydon Carter, the current editor of Vanity Fair--and a constant subject of Trump's angry tweets, supposedly requested the meeting. I'd love to be a fly on the wall for that one. I suspect Trump will show him the length of at least one finger.

Today's also the day Trump gets his security briefing from the intelligence community. I'd like to hear the conversation in that meeting even more. I suspect the president elect will be seeing the lengths of a few fingers himself.

3-year-old rocks Clementi



When I was a kid and started feeling a little too big for my britches, my father used to say "Mozart was composing concertos when he was five."

Always shut me up. This video will serve the same purpose for my boys.

Wisdom

Thanks to "OG" for this one...

My Favorite Redneck

What he said...