Friday, September 28, 2012

A Movie I Can Get Behind

The film is called: "The American Brew: the Rich and Surprising History of Beer".

Shore Magazine has the details.

Michael Savage

Do you feel a little better today and can't figure out why? Does the world seem a little brighter, less bitter, smell better, and have a certain 'zip-a-dee-doo-dah' vibe today?

It might be because Michael Savage won't be on the radio "for some time". (The full story is here.) Unfortunately, it won't last. He's already negotiating to hook up with a different company.

Nevertheless, until he does, the world will be a little less "spewy".

Today's Best Tweets

I've begun to spend a few minutes every day reading my twitter feed. Here are ten that caught my eye today...

J'Marcus Webb ‏@jmarcuswebb
Should we know current events? My m.agent keeps telling me "turn the TV on while you get dressed, and watch the news, so you know what's going on in the world!" Do you think she's right?

Deadspin ‏@Deadspin
Replacement ref talks: "The last guy who was perfect they nailed to a cross. And he wasn't even an official."

Eddie Volkman ‏@EddieVolkman
Excuse me, Prime Minister Netanyahu? Wile E. Coyote called. He wants his bomb back.

Dan Bernstein ‏@dan_bernstein
Great longtime-married exchange: "Do you want to watch that show, the one with whats-her-name?" "No." "Ok."

Steven Tyler ‏@IamStevenT

Walter Cronkite ‏@WCronkite
"Every morning I wake up and think, what are the bastards hiding today" Bob Woodward

Funny Or Die ‏@funnyordie
Wondering why China is kicking America's ass? Look no further than Honey Boo Boo:

Huffington Post ‏@HuffingtonPost
8 totally unreasonable prenup demands

Peter Gammons ‏@pgammo
At the time, it seemed simple. Now: Rizzo .288/.345/.468/.813 15 HR, 316 AB Gonzalez .294/.338/.461/.799 18 HR, 603 AB

Marty Jencius ‏@jencius
A new bedtime story. Election season is winding up, so listen to Shaft and wake the f**k up! #wtfu @SamuelLJackson NSFW

Operation Unlike

Facebook has launched a crackdown on fake "Likes", calling the project "Operation Unlike". Apparently, fake accounts have been created simply to like certain people, companies or products, and Facebook wants to get rid of them. Some have seen their "Like" numbers go way down.

Not me. I guess I'm not fake liked.

Sniff. They like me. They really, really like me.*

*That's a Sally Field reference for those of you who don't get my antiquated references.

Cubs 365, September 28

On this day in 1938, the second place Cubs were playing the first place Pittsburgh Pirates at Wrigley Field. It was the bottom of the ninth, the score was tied 5-5, and Cubs catcher Gabby Hartnett stepped to the plate.

The umpires were sure to call the game because of darkness if the Cubs didn't score in the bottom of the inning. No one knows how Hartnett even saw that ball from Pittsburgh pitcher Mace Brown, but Gabby knocked it out of the park, in a moment that will always be remembered as the "Homer in the Gloamin." The Cubs overtook the Pirates for first place, and clinched the pennant a few days later.

It sounded like this on the radio.

All these years later, "The Homer in the Gloamin'" remains the second most famous home run in Wrigley Field history.

Dave Fogel

The morning man at WLS-FM in Chicago did his last show yesterday. (Robert Feder has the details) If you didn't listen to the program, his name was Dave Fogel and he had been the morning man there for the past two years.

I interviewed him for Chicago Radio Spotlight when he arrived.

In the interim the new morning man will be Tom O'Toole, but don't be surprised if a certain mustachioed Michigander takes over that slot soon. (That's a Fred Winston reference for those of you who don't follow my cryptic subtleties.)

Jim Rome

From this morning's RAMP Newsletter...

"It's an announcement that Jim Rome himself would describe as "Epic!" -- CBS Sports Radio has signed nationally awesome sports personality Jim Rome as the newest piece of the personality line-up when the 24/7 radio network launches next year. The Jim Rome Show will run live weekdays from noon-3pm ET beginning Wednesday, January 2, 2013. "Jim would be at the top of any list highlighting sports radio's most authoritative and opinionated hosts, which is exactly why we're thrilled to welcome him to CBS Sports Radio," said CBS Radio Pres./CEO Dan Mason. "We're building a network that showcases the incredible assets of CBS Radio and CBS Sports, and creating a strategic opportunity for growth in this untapped marketplace. Jim's presence in this marquee time period adds strength to our lineup and exceptional value to our advertisers."

I certainly hope CBS doesn't force all of their sports stations to carry him. In Chicago, CBS owns the Score, and I for one, would much rather hear Dan McNeil in that time slot. Maybe it's just me, but I've always considered Rome to be the most overrated sportscaster in the country. There's something about his delivery that has always rubbed me the wrong way.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Today's Best Tweets

I've begun to spend a few minutes every day reading my twitter feed. Here are ten that caught my eye today...

The Balding Handbook ‏@BaldingHandbook
Royal cover-up? No sign of a bald patch on Prince Charles's 60th birthday coin … via @MailOnline

miketoomey ‏@miketoomey
This day in 1988 Lab tests reportedly show Shroud of Turin not Christ`s burial cloth but in fact Tammy Faye Bakker's pillow case.

Lil Wayne has surpassed Elvis Presley as the leading male with the most entries on Billboard's Hot 100 chart.

Rolling Stone ‏@RollingStone
#TheBeatles' remastered albums are finally coming out on vinyl:

Sam Sifton ‏@SamSifton
Don't eat that gray snow, either. NYT reports on a ski resort that wants to use sewage effluent to make powder:

Univ. of Illinois ‏@Illinois_Alma
Here's a mesmerizing time lapse video of the demolition of Garner Hall. Did you live there?

The New York Times ‏@nytimes
Herbert Lom, Frustrated Boss of Inspector Clouseau, Dies at 95

Buster Olney ‏@Buster_ESPN
Here's the story by colleague Willie Weinbaum about Adam Greenberg getting an at-bat. …

On new album, Green Day sorely missing the B.S. detector that has served them well during 12-yr rise via@JimDeRogatis

WSCR AM ‏@670TheScore
Listen: Indians Radio Announcer Rips Sox Fans For Lack Of Attendance

Cubs 365, September 27

On this day in 1876, the last game of the first official National League season was played. The Chicago White Stockings (today's Cubs) beat the Hartford Dark Blues 16-10. Because Chicago ended the season seven games ahead of the second place St. Louis Brown Stockings, they were declared the champions.

Among the players on that team: Hall of Famers Albert Spalding (a 47-game winner that season) and Cap Anson (who batted .356). Neither of them were the biggest star of that team, however. That honor went to second baseman Ross Barnes, who led the league in hitting (.429), runs, hits, doubles, triples, and walks.

Of course, modern day fans would barely recognize the 1876 game because they played with very different rules. Very different.

For instance, the pitchers mound was only 45 feet away from home plate. The pitchers threw underhand, and batters could request either high or low pitches. If a ball bounced over the fence, it was a homer...and some fences were less than 200 feet away from home. It also took nine balls to get a walk, and a foul ball was an out if it was caught on one bounce.

Like we said, very different.

But a championship is a championship, and no one can take away Chicago's glorious 1876 title.

World's Most Popular Beer

The top ten most popular beers in the world are listed here.

You'll recognize most of them. The list includes a few American favorites like Miller Lite (#8), Coors Light (#7), Budweiser (#3), and Bud Light (#2), and a few international beers that are very common here like Heineken (#6) and Corona (#4), but there are four beers on this list that I've never heard of--and I know a little bit about this subject.

Two of them are popular in Brazil--Brahma (#9) and Skol (#5). One of them is popular in Japan--Asahi Super Dry (#10). But the thing that really shocked me is that I've never heard of the #1 most popular beer in the entire world. It's called "Snow Beer" and it's from China.

Of course, this list just proves that the entire world is stupid. How can there not be a single German beer on this list? I get it that the Germans have done some less than admirable things over the last few centuries, but there is one thing that they have consistently done better than anyone else in the world for the last five hundred years or so--brew beer. Bud Light (!?!) would be embarrassed to be in the same room as a good German beer.

Good thing I'm not taking it personally.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

RIP Andy Williams

One of my late father's favorite singers passed away today at the age of 84; Andy Williams. We watched his television show every week when I was a kid. He was best known for "Moon River" and of course, this Christmas season classic...

I usually think of it more often during this season...

RIP, Andy. Thanks for the memories.

Kim Strickland & Randy Richardson

The Eckhartz Press blog has the latest info about two of our authors, Kim Strickland and Randy Richardson. They're both hustling to promote their novels.

Kim is going on a book blog tour, and Randy has been reviewed, interviewed, and is appearing at an event this weekend.

Read all about them here.

Today's Best Tweets

I've begun to spend a few minutes every day reading my twitter feed. Here are ten that caught my eye today...

ChicagoNow ‏@ChicagoNow
Are you reading this tweet in a bathroom stall? It would not be a shock if you were.

Rolling Stone ‏@RollingStone
'Moon River' singer Andy Williams is dead at 84

Karl Klockars ‏@karlklockars
Singing "Moon River" just makes me think of that scene in Fletch. ("You using the whole fist there, doc?")

Tom Teuber ‏@tteuber
Did you see Feder? Randy Michaels' bankers have already pulled the plug. It's the 2nd item in today's column

WSCR AM ‏@670TheScore
Rodgers Apologizes To Fans For NFL 'Tarnishing The Game'

The Heckler ‏@The_Heckler
Hey #Packer fans: Now you know how #HawkHarrelson feels after every single call

Steve HomerTrue ‏@espnhomer
Stolen but great. "Now that interceptions are being called TDs, Brett Favre has decided to make a comeback." Even Favre lovers got to laugh.

The Balding Handbook ‏@BaldingHandbook
Bald Guy Birthday september 26.....Ivan Pavlov known for his theories on classical conditioning (ding, ding)..Oh crap gotta change my shirt.

Huffington Post ‏@HuffingtonPost
New sperm extractor machine lends a hand

Literary Writers ‏@LiteraryWriters
“I never know what I think about something until I read what I've written on it.” - William Faulkner

New D. Rose Commercial

A Father's Dilemma

A father discovered his 13-year-old son had downloaded a bunch of porn onto his computer. How did the dad handle this? He wrote him a letter, essentially saying he wasn't doing anything wrong, but he needs to be careful so he doesn't ruin the computer.

I have had "the talk" with my two older boys, but we've never really discussed porn. I guess I better do that. Ugh. There's nothing I enjoy more than incredibly awkward conversations with teenage boys that don't want to talk about anything.

Cubs 365, September 26

On this day in 1989 the Cubs clinched a division title. The Little Engine That Could ("The Boys of Zimmer") did it in the least glamorous location in the big leagues--Montreal's Olympic Stadium. Only 11,000 fans were in the stands, and in that huge ballpark, it looked like half as many.

Greg Maddux was sharp on the mound for the Cubs. He gave up only one extra base hit all game (a double to Tim Raines), but he ran out of gas in the bottom of the ninth. Mitch "the Wild Thing" Williams was brought in to close it out. He got pinch hitter Wallace Johnson to pop out to second for the second out.

That left it up to another Expos pinch hitter, Mike Fitzgerald. With the tying run on third base, Williams reared back and fired. He ended the game the way every clinching game should be ended; STRIKE THREE!

The Who

According to Mitch Michaels' "Today in Rock History", on this day in 1965 the Who got into a little tiff...

"1965, At the end of a European tour Roger Daltry knocked out Keith Moon and was sacked from The Who. The band were playing two shows in one night in Denmark, when an argument broke about between all four band members. Daltry was reinstated the following day."

This is what The Who looked and sounded like in 1965...

Rick Sanchez Returns

Remember Rick Sanchez? He worked with CNN as an anchor until he said some rather unfortunate things about Jews in a radio interview. Well, he has finally resurfaced.

Sanchez was hired by Fox News Latino.

Charlie Fick

Charlie Fick is a rookie with the Houston Astros. (Don't ask me what his last name means in German). Stuart Shea from Bardball has written a short little poem about him, which I found amusing.

You can read it here.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Fool on the Hill

From Bob Dearborn's The Olde Disc Jockey's Almanac, this gem from 45 years ago today...

September 25, 1967…The Beatles recorded "The Fool On The Hill." Paul McCartney later said "I was writing about someone like Maharishi (Yogi). His detractors called him a fool. Because of his giggle he wasn't taken too seriously."

Reporter-Clinton Aide E-mail Tiff

Michael Hastings is the reporter. Hillary Clinton aide Philippe Reines is the interviewee (via e-mail).

The exchange is fascinating.

Even though the aide told the reporter to "F*** Off" at the end, I can't say I blame him after reading the whole thing. Then again, I'm not in the State Department. I think it's safe to say his response was not diplomatic.

J.K. Rowling

Pre-sales for her upcoming novel for adults are now at over one million.

All this without vampires or sexual domination.

Or wizards for that matter.

Today's Best Tweets

I've begun to spend a few minutes every day reading my twitter feed. Here are ten that caught my eye today...

Albert Brooks ‏@AlbertBrooks
Breaking sports news: NFL refs just reviewed '86 World Series. Bill Buckner did NOT drop the ball.

Lin Brehmer ‏@LinBrehmer
#Packers are 1-2 Send Lawyers, guns and money. The Cheese has hit the fan.

Dan McNeil ‏@DanMcNeil670
I guess I gotta pay the bookie regardless. Goodell owes me $220.

The Heckler ‏@The_Heckler
How many barns do you think are currently on fire in Wisconsin? Worse than the 1981 cheese riots, we bet.

Steve Cochran ‏@CochranShow
RT @rolandsmartin: Gov Scott Walker wants to bust up unions in Wisconsin. He is pleading for the referees union to make a deal with @nfl!

Rick Kaempfer ‏@RickKaempfer
I am outraged (outraged!) by that call in the MNF game. Wait a second. Did that just happen to the Packers? Scab refs are people too.

Man had sex with couch, cops say

Lisa and Ray US99.5 ‏@LisaandRay995
How did you get your babies to fall asleep? One couple uses the Star Wars Theme Song...

Amy Guth ‏@amyguth
Prince disappointed fans, says @gregkot. Was booed during 1st of 3 nights at United Center:

Funny One Liners ‏@funnyoneliners
I've been holding my stomach in for about 3 years now so don't talk to me about dedication

Cubs 365, September 25

On this day in 1995, Cubs pitcher Frank Castillo pitched the best game of his life.

He didn't give up a hit through eight innings, and went into the top of the ninth inning with a 7-0 lead against the Cardinals. First he faced pinch hitter Terry Bradshaw and struck him out for his 12th strikeout of the game. The second batter of the inning, pinch hitter Mark Sweeney, was his 13th victim.

That brought up Bernard Gilkey. Wrigley Field was rockin' as strike one was called. The fans were on the edge of their seats when Gilkey got strike two. Castillo needed just one more strike to complete the no-hitter.

Unfortunately, Bernard Gilkey wasn't playing along. He stroked the next pitch down the line for a triple, ending Castillo's bid for immortality.

Castillo's final pitching line for the day: 9 IP, 1 H, 0 R, O ER, 2 BB, 13 Ks

Jackie Robinson Movie Trailer

Can't wait to see this...

Monday, September 24, 2012

Don Wade Faces Brain Surgery

So sorry to hear this news. Robert Feder has the details.

I interviewed Don last year for the Landecker book (coming out in a few months) and he couldn't have been more co-operative and friendly.

I hope he recovers completely.

Sumner Names a Successor

When you're pushing 90 years old you have to start at least pretending that you won't be around forever. That's probably why Viacom and CBS chairman Sumner Redstone named a successor this weekend: Viacom CEO Philippe Daumann.

Although, if I could give a word of warning to Philippe. You aren't the first successor that Sumner has named. Take a quick look at what has happened to everyone else he has named in the past.

Just sayin.

The 60 Minutes Interviews

I watched both candidate interviews on 60 Minutes last night, and I must say, I was impressed by the interviewers Scott Pelley and Steve Kroft. Those were not softball interviews, and both candidates looked a little nervous under the questioning. You can tell that neither one of these guys is accustomed to getting tough questions like this anymore. They better toughen up before the debates.

Of course there were a few questions I would have liked asked that weren't, and they did let them off a few times without additional follow ups (although honestly I think you could follow up a million times and they wouldn't give straight answers to a couple of questions), but there was a lot of ground to cover, and they covered nearly all of it.

I hope the moderators of the debates do this well.

Today's Best Tweets

I've begun to spend a few minutes every day reading my twitter feed. Here are ten that caught my eye today...

kippermcgee ‏@kippermcgee
Morning Blend: "There is nothing so useless as doing efficiently that which should not be done at all." ~Peter Drucker

bill adee ‏@Bill80
City wants free Wi-Fi in all parks, public spaces

Can a single phone give the economy a bump? Some say the iPhone 5 could add $3 billion to the economy

Bob Malkowski ‏@RobertMalkowski
I don't understand people who stand in lines for phones?? I wouldn't stand in line for an Egg McMuffin! Wait a minute, YES I WOULD!

Lisa and Ray US99.5 ‏@LisaandRay995
Video: People in Amsterdam try to pick up an IPHONE 5 that's glued to the ground! Too Funny....

Bo Biafra ‏@BoBiafra
QUESTION: Why is Denard Robinson always on bottom when he has sex? ANSWER: Cause he can only f*** up.

Chuck Garfien ‏@ChuckGarfien
New rule for White Sox and Tigers in the AL Central: Team that loses the most wins the division. ‏@AllAccess
John Gehron Exiting Merlin Media Advisory Board

Rolling Stone ‏@RollingStone
Nirvana's 'Nevermind' was released 21 years ago today. Read our 1994 interview with Kurt Cobain: #longreads

Rick Kaempfer ‏@RickKaempfer
AP Headline: Jimmy Kimmel hosts an Efficient Emmycast. Not exactly what you want said about you unless the reviewer is a German. #Emmys

Romney's New Ad

Nice work from the Conan staff...

Cubs 365, September 24

On this day in 1984, the Cubs clinched their first post-season appearance in 39 years. They did it in Pittsburgh against the Pirates.

Rick Sutcliffe was on the mound for the Cubs, and he was masterful. The Cubs scored in each of the first three innings and never looked back. Sutcliffe went the distance, dramatically striking out Joe Orsulak for the final out of the game.

The entire city (OK, half the city) of Chicago went wild.

Harry Caray and Jack Brickhouse were both in the clubhouse during the celebration in Pittsburgh, and Harry offered his usual homespun advice...

The Emmy Awards

Forgot it was on. Didn't watch it. Took my lovely wife out to dinner instead.

If you missed it too, the Washington Post has a full review and recap of the night's big winners.

Jay Beau Jones

I once interviewed for a job with Jay Beau Jones. At the time he was the program director of our competitor Jammin' Oldies. He wanted me to produce the show for Doug James, his morning host at the time. James had some help on the air every week from radio legend Larry Lujack. (I said no to the job and stayed with John Landecker's show). Apparently that experience working with Larry Lujack inspired Jay Beau Jones. He has written a book, according to this morning's RAMP Newsletter...

"Veteran programmer Jay Beau Jones has gathered a bunch of heartfelt, real-life stories and assembled them into an inspiring new book, Heroes, Mentors, and Friends: Learning From Our Spiritual Guides. Jones, who wrote the book under his real name, John Dowd, Jr., describes Heroes, Mentors, and Friends as "a collection of stories from positive people reminding us why we got into the business we love called radio. It also takes a look at the journey of who we are on the inside, helping us enrich our lives on the outside...I really enjoyed sharing three particular stories about three great heroes of mine: Rick Dees, Larry Lujack and a New England TV hero, Rex Trailer," he said. "Every time I read Heroes, Mentors, and Friends the spark that is alive in me re-ignites and helps me remember why I got into our great business." Heroes, Mentors, and Friends is available now through Balboa Press and can be purchased on"

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Father Knows Nothing

This week's Father Knows Nothing column chronicles the birth, ten years ago this week, of Sean Harrison Kaempfer.

You can read it here.