Saturday, January 17, 2009

Don Zimmer & Pete LaCock

Two Cubs birthdays of note today...

One was a Cubs second baseman and a Cubs manager. He turns 78 today.

The other one was the son of Hollywood Squares host Peter Marshall. He is 58 years old today.

Happy birthday Don Zimmer and Pete LaCock.

Chicago Radio Spotlight: Eric Ferguson

In this week's Chicago Radio Spotlight, I talk to WTMX's Eric Ferguson about the success of his show (Eric & Kathy), the secrets to their success, and predictions for the show's future.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Programming Note

Coming this weekend on Chicago Radio Spotlight: WTMX's Eric Ferguson.

Next weekend: The Loop's Kent Voss.

Dizzy Dean

If he were alive today, Dizzy Dean would be celebrating his 99th birthday. I was reading Irv Kupcinet's book, "Kup's Chicago," (from 1962) and he has a great story in there about his run-in with Dizzy Dean...

When Dean was with the Cardinals training in Tampa (before he came to the Cubs in ’38), Dizzy and his wife ran into Jack Miley, a writer for the NY Daily News who had been making fun of them in his column. In the lobby of the Tampa Terrace Hotel, Dizzy’s wife said: “There’s that fat sonuvabitch. Give him his lumps.”

Kup just happened to be standing next to Miley, when they were surrounded by the entire Cardinals team, still in uniform—heading back to their rooms. Miley and Dizzy started calling each other vile names. A teammate of Dizzy’s got so mad, he hit Miley in the face with his spikes, which he had been carrying in his hand so it wouldn’t ruin the lobby carpeting. This led to an all-out brawl. Miley got a 2-inch gash in his forehead, Kup got a black eye, and the potted plants, tables, and lamps got busted up.

That was Dizzy Dean.

I've written about his days with the Cubs a few times. You can check those out here and here.

P.S. Do you think that #22 is a cursed number for Cubs pitchers?

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Cubs convention history

The week of the Cubs convention the Cubs usually have some new acquisition to announce, to excite the fans. Last year it was Kosuke. This year it's Milton Bradley.

In 1998, it was the guy attached to this mustache.

Reader Response

Some responses from my Father Knows Nothing post about the kid who killed his mom because she took away his video game...

1. Alisha Says:
I cannot fathom how that father must feel now, being without a wife and soon to be without a son…OVER A FREAKIN VIDEO GAME?!?! I have seen a few people “on halo” and its not pretty…I talk like its a drug, and sometimes, obviously for some people it is.

2. Father Knows Nothing Says:

I feel exactly the same way. I discussed this story with my boys yesterday and they were very quiet. Something happens to the their brains when they play these games, and honestly, it’s terrifying to watch. I’ve gotten to the point where I don’t let them touch video games during the week at all.

3. momkat Says:

I discourage my son from playing violent video games, and we have very lively debates over the “shooting-as-entertainment” issue. Thankfully, he’s a Guitar Hero freak in his free time. It’s not my first choice of activity for him, but at least he’s not killing for sport. It really IS scary.

4. Father Knows Nothing Says:

I’m OK with Guitar Hero too. At least that’s semi-musical. I also don’t mind some of the Wii games that require actual physical movement. I know I sound like my parents here, but there really is something to this.

Happy Birthday Peter

My little brother Peter is 39 years old today. Seems like just yesterday I was holding him down on the ground and dangling spit inches from his face. Ah, memories.

Pete is a CPA, but he knows nothing about taxes. I asked him to explain that to my readers on Tax Day a few years ago, and I thought his response was pretty entertaining.

You can read it here.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Stay warm!

We're supposed to have 60-straight hours of below zero temperatures. Be sure to put on a sweater to stay warm. Here are some sweater fashion tips from 1948 to help out the ladies.

The difference between boys and girls

Today's headline: American Idol ratings down 10%. In our house this show is not a big deal. In fact, I think we've watched it about five times total.

On the other hand, check out this video of girls reacting to last year's American Idol final announcement...

Snow eating tips

As even more snow falls on the Midwest and we prepare for the deepest of deep freezes, Johnny and Sean Kaempfer have some snow-eating tips.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Slightly disturbing

According to the British papers today, a British company is selling thousands of Nazi-era newspapers to the Germans.

Readers will be able to see what their parents and grandparents bought during the 12 years of the Third Reich, including the racist speeches of Hitler, how the Kristallnacht pogrom against the Jews was reported and how the war was colored against the Allies.

That's disturbing enough, but for me there was an even more disturbing sentence. I'm just going to quote it for you: "For the next year, newspaper excerpts will be restored and scanned from German publications such as...Communist Party mouthpiece Der Kaempfer – which was shut down shortly after the Nazi seizure of power in 1933."

How'd you like your last name connected to the Nazis and the Commies in one sentence?

Video games are evil

I've previously written about what happens to my kids when they play video games. It looks like I shouldn't complain. This kid killed his parents when they took away his games.

How cold is it?

According to David Letterman last night...

"It's so cold in Chicago that Governor Blagojevic had to lower the ear flaps on his hair."

I stand corrected

Earlier I intimated that Andre Dawson had a song written about him, while actual HOF inductees Jim Rice and Rickey Henderson didn't. I stand corrected. "R" points out to me that while Jim Rice didn't have a song written about him...he did write songs.

It's a stretch, but I'm willing to concede the point.

Suburban Man

For those of you stopping by today to see Suburban Man, this is a friendly reminder that Suburban Man is now called "Father Knows Nothing." I posted a new "Father Knows Nothing" column at my NWI Parent blog on Sunday. It's called "A lesson in community service" and it's about a plan to teach the boys the joys of helping others...that didn't turn out exactly as planned.

Andre Dawson

I just don't understand how this guy is not in the Hall of Fame. The baseball writers snubbed him again yesterday.

I don't have a quarrel with Rickey Henderson or Jim Rice. Both of those guys are definitely deserving, but what's the deal with the Andre Dawson snub?

I've previously made the case for him here and here.

And ask yourself this: Do either of those two new Hall of Famers have their very own song? I thought not.

Monday, January 12, 2009

40 years, 50 years

VIDEO: Today is the 40th anniversary of the first Led Zeppelin album.

VIDEO: Today is also the 50th anniversary of Motown. This song financed Motown both literally and figuratively, because it was written by Berry Gordy. It provided the nest egg that created the record label.

E-mails, we get e-mails...

I got this e-mail from "B" this morning about my latest Father Knows Nothing column: "Good story in NWI about snow shoveling. I remember when we lived in Michigan in the early 70s. My dad made us three boys shovel our elderly neighbors driveway. My nine year old mind remembers it as a massive driveway the length of a football field. I'm sure it wasn't that big, but boy did it snow in Michigan in the 70s. I have no idea what happened to that elderly couple as we moved away in 1974, but I often think of them when I am digging out of yet another Nor'easter in New England."

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Father Knows Nothing

I just posted a new "Father Knows Nothing" column at my NWI Parent blog. It's called "A lesson in community service" and it's about a plan to teach the boys the joys of helping others...that didn't turn out exactly as planned.