"PEDs? What are those?" RT @Schmutzie_ Something looks different about Mark Prior pic.twitter.com/4sYqFkqC4g— Dave Wischnowsky (@wischlist) March 20, 2015
Musings, observations, and written works from the publisher of Eckhartz Press, the media critic for the Illinois Entertainer, co-host of Minutia Men, Minutia Men Celebrity Interview and Free Kicks, and the author of "Back in the D.D.R", "EveryCubEver", "The Living Wills", "$everance," "Father Knows Nothing," "The Radio Producer's Handbook," "Records Truly Is My Middle Name", and "Gruen Weiss Vor".
Friday, March 20, 2015
That's Mark Prior?
RIP Michael Brown
Michael Brown (nee Michael Lookofsky), keyboardist with the Left Banke and Stories, died Thursday of unknown causes. He was 65. Michael’s father, a session violinist, owned a recording studio in New York and produced, published and managed the baroque-oriented Left Banke when they formed in 1965. Michael wrote their two hits-- “Walk Away Renee” (#5-1966) and “Pretty Ballerina” (#15-1967), but when he recorded another-- “Ivy Ivy” (#119-1967) using studio musicians, the resulting friction caused the group to disband (though they later reformed without Michael and without any more hits). He went on to play with Montage before joining Stories, having been introduced to Ian Lloyd by their fathers. He stayed with the group for their first album and first three singles, including “I’m Coming Home” (#42-1972) and “Brother Louie” (#1-1973-- which initially was missing from the album). After forming the unsuccessful group, the Beckies in 1976, he eventually gave up music.
I owned this 45 RPM...
Toilet Paper Controversy Finally Ended
The patent for toilet paper should settle the over vs under debate pic.twitter.com/arZl6l6ALn— Owen Williams (@ow) March 17, 2015
It's an age old argument...does the toilet paper roll go over or under? I'm an under guy myself, and according to the original patent (which was unearthed this week) I've been doing it incorrectly for more than 50 years.
I blame my mother.
First day of (Jack) Spring!
He pitched for seven teams in his eight big league seasons, and for exactly one month that team was the Cubs. They acquired Jack in May of 1964, and he pitched in seven games over the next few weeks. But then on June 15, 1964, Spring was called into the manager’s office and told he had been traded again. This time he was the throw-in in the trade that sent Lou Brock to the Cardinals. In St. Louis, Spring won a ring (although he didn’t make the postseason roster that year). Not sure what happened to that Brock character. One of the most miraculous stats of Jack’s career is this little tidbit: He once went 19 consecutive outings without recording a strikeout. That’s the longest streak since 1957.
What a great event this is.
Even if it feels a little hollow without a certain team from downstate Illinois.
Ben Finfer back at ESPN
Finfer is a smart guy, a good broadcaster, and is highly regarded by his former colleagues. I'm hoping this part-time gig leads to something a little more permanent. (I interviewed Ben for Chicago Radio Spotlight about five years ago. That interview is here.)
Thursday, March 19, 2015
AA Might Not Be The Only Way
This article in the Atlantic questions AA's results--and points to a few other potential treatment options. I have no idea if the writer's assumptions about AA are true or not (and neither does the writer--the second A in AA stands for anonymous--which means the actual results cannot be known or tested), I simply present it for those of you who have tried AA (maybe even multiple times) without success.
It's a subject near to my heart because alcohol led directly to the death of a person I loved very much. I don't want to disregard any possible cure or remedy. I'm encouraged by the science-based brain research at the heart of these new approaches. Maybe it will work for you.
Please don't get me wrong here. I'm not trying to besmirch AA. I have a ton of respect for anyone who has the courage to do whatever is necessary to stop--and AA has worked for many of them--including some very close friends of mine. My goal in sharing this article is to point out that failing at AA doesn't mean it's time to give up on life and just succumb to the bottle. If might just mean that a different path could be better for you.
Holy Cow! Eddie V is BACK! @HarryCarays pic.twitter.com/yJiOrMGxXP— Eddie V's Road Show (@EddieVsRoadShow) March 18, 2015
Every Cub Ever (T)
What will you find there? A Hall of Famer, 18 classic baseball cards, eight Cubs named Taylor, five videos, two classic audio clips, the man who hit one of the most famous homers in history, a 1908 Cub, two brothers, the winner of the double-no-hitter game, two Japanese players, a broadcaster, a manager, a celebrity fan, a Cubs scribe, plus Chink, Dirt, Rainbow and Bird Eye.
Check it out here.
Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
The list of performers announced so far include Beck, Dave Grohl, Joe Walsh, Tom Morello, John Legend, Stevie Ray's big brother Jimmie Vaughan and more TBA!
Zander Gets New Gig
"I have long-admired the work Neal Sabin has done on the television side with Weigel Broadcasting. I'm excited to be a part of bringing the MeTV brand to the radio, and beyond," said Zander.
Congrats to Mark.
Wednesday, March 18, 2015
The Wrigley Videoboard
It doesn't really get into the pros and cons, except to note that it won't cause more noise for the neighborhood. I've never been concerned about the neighborhood, myself. Unless they moved there in 1913, they should have known what they were getting into.
I'm more concerned about the in-stadium experience. I'm still torn on this. My seats will look directly at this new video board. I'm still processing whether that's a pro or a con.
Piers Morgan on Heather Mills
It's about Heather Mills (Paul McCartney's second wife), and yes, it's a little mean (the headline is: Greedy, ghastly, lying fantasist - and those are just Heather Mills' good points! But at least she gives us all a laugh)
But Piers is the one that introduced Mills and McCartney, so he has some credibility in this area. Of course, I'm a Paul fan, so I may be a little biased about the article's conclusions.
Why is this newsreader's photo going viral?
A Nice Father/Son Moment
Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy
RIP Jack Haley
It is with great sadness that the Haley family announces the passing of our beloved father, son, and brother. Our hearts are broken by this sudden, unexpected loss. Jack was honored and grateful for the opportunity to play in the NBA for nine years, alongside world-class athletes with the Los Angeles Lakers, Chicago Bulls, San Antonio Spurs, and New Jersey Nets. He cherished every moment and gave 100% whether on or off the court. And more than anything, Jack dearly loved his family. We are humbled and grateful for the outpouring of love, support, and prayers form around the country. An autopsy revealed cause of death as a result of heart disease.
Bulls beat writer Sam Smith has a great piece about Haley at bulls.com.
Jack Haley, the onetime Chicago Bull who played parts of nine NBA seasons with four NBA teams and the Bulls twice, died Tuesday at 51. The cause was believed to be a heart attack.
Ironic and sad, really, because few had more heart, the way we use it colloquially in sports, more than Jack.
You’ll read and hear about Haley being the caddie or babysitter for Dennis Rodman on the champion 1996 Bulls, being the guy who waved the towel enthusiastically from the bench, sort of a 12th man punch line. That was Haley, sure. But there was much more to Jack and why in many respects, as much as Rodman and Michael Jordan and college teammate Reggie Miller and so many of the great players of that era, Jack was a guy to admire and respect and perhaps more so a model for the rest of us.
We couldn’t be like Mike.
We could be like Jack.
Read the entire piece. There are some great stories about him there. RIP, Jack. We'll always remember you in Chicago.
RIP Andy Frasur
London-born ANDY FRASER, a child prodigy who played with JOHN MAYALL’S BLUESBREAKERS before his 16th birthday, then joined FREE as a bass player, where he created the famous riff in “All Right Now,” passed away in his TEMECULA, CA, home of unknown causes at the age of 62. After moving to CALIFORNIA, he wrote hits for ROBERT PLAMER (“Every Kinda People”), JOE COCKER, CHAKA KHAN, ROD STEWART and PAUL YOUNG. FRASER contracted a rare form of cancer, Kaposi’s sarcoma, in the ‘80s, and was diagnosed with AIDS shortly after coming out as a homosexual. Up until his passing, he was considered the “poster child” for living with AIDS and not have it be a death sentence.
If he did nothing else in his life, this incredible riff on "All Right Now" made him an indispensible part of rock and roll history...
Every Cub Ever (S)
What will you find there? Five Hall of Famers, 31 classic baseball cards, 22 videos, 16 Cubs named Smith, seven Celebrity fans, five 1908 Cubs, five classic audio clips, 5 Cubs named Stephenson, three broadcasters, three scribes, three 1945 Cubs, three 1969 Cubs, two executives, a kidnapper, an evangelist, the wrong Sewell, the man who created a presidential scandal, plus Grumpy, Bear Tracks and the Brat.
Check it out here.
Don't Criticize Fox News
"It's pretty simple," Kaus said in an interview, "I wrote a piece attacking Fox for not being the opposition on immigration and amnesty -- for filling up the airwaves with reports on ISIS and terrorism, and not fulfilling their responsibility of being the opposition on amnesty and immigration.... I posted it at 6:30 in the morning. When I got up, Tucker had taken it down. He said, 'We can't trash Fox on the site. I work there.'"
Kaus says when he told Carlson he needed to be able to write about Fox, Carlson told him it was a hard-and-fast rule, and non-negotiable.
Kaus will now publish his columns exclusively on Kausfiles, a blog that was previously featured on Slate. But he said that Fox News' influence over The Daily Caller was indicative of a larger problem in conservative media.
"It's a larger problem on the right: Everybody is scared of Fox," he said. "Fox is their route to a high-profile public image and in some cases stardom. Just to be on a Fox show is a big deal. And I think that's a problem on the right, Fox's monopoly on star-making power."
This is a fascinating piece on so many levels. On the one hand, Kaus believes that a "news" organization has a "responsibility to be the opposition" on every issue. Um, no. They are supposed to report the news. And Carlson is explicitly saying that his "news" aggregating website will never criticize Fox News.
And some people in this country actually believe they are getting real news from the conservative press.
FCC Chairman Grilled
Get it straight, fellas. Once it's actually explained, people want this. We're not 3-1 in favor of anything these days. That might as well be 100%.
Tuesday, March 17, 2015
Irish Drinking Songs
St. Patrick's Day
EVERY CUB EVER (Pat)
What will you find there? A football Hall of Famer (that's right), a broadcaster, a heavy drinker, a public address announcer, a 1908 Cub, and Mr. Clutch.
Check it out here.
Chicago Radio Ratings
An even more in-depth analysis is here at Chicagoland Radio and Media. According to this, WGN has fallen out of the top ten completely.
Monday, March 16, 2015
Back in the Top 100
Obama Does Stand Up
*This is my third appearance at this dinner as President. And I predict you will laugh harder than ever. I’m not saying I’m any funnier. I’m saying weed is now legal in D.C.
*Now, let’s face it, being President does age you. I mean, look at me. I was hoping Fred Thompson would be the Republican speaker so I could buy a reverse mortgage. You start getting crankier as you get older. Next week, I’m signing an executive order to get off my lawn. And getting older changes you. For example, coffee really disagrees with me these days — which is why John Boehner just invited coffee to address the joint House.
*Despite a great performance tonight, Scott (Walker) has had a few recent stumbles. The other week he said he didn’t know whether or not I was a Christian. And I was taken aback, but fortunately my faith teaches us forgiveness. So, Governor Walker, as-salamu alaykum...And, finally, Governor Walker got some heat for staying silent when Rudy Giuliani said I don’t love America — which I also think is a problem. Think about it, Scott — if I did not love America, I wouldn’t have moved here from Kenya.
*We just had an election. This new Congress is just getting started, which is why I want to acknowledge the leader of the House Republicans — as soon as I figure out who that is. The fact is, I really genuinely like John Boehner. But from your press reports, I gather he may be in real trouble. Over the past several weeks, many of you have been writing about a possible conservative coup — or as Bill O’Reilly calls it, “reporting from the war zone.”
Sponsor a Letter
Details in the graphic below. Click on it to enlarge the photo. Your company can get a banner ad, sponsor one of our videos, or even sponsor an entire letter of the EVERY CUB EVER alphabet...
Join the Truffle Hunters by ordering the book here.
Creepy Kiss Alert
All in all, I envy Dick Vitale's tie the most. pic.twitter.com/Q9qGeIo6gn— Jimmy Greenfield (@jcgreenx) March 16, 2015
Yuuuuck. It inspired me to respond with the following tweet...
@jcgreenx Reminds me of this one (Chicago Tribune pic) pic.twitter.com/tqD46qYdht— Rick Kaempfer (@RickKaempfer) March 16, 2015
5 Indiana Schools?
Zero schools from Illinois made the tournament this year. Zero.
Five schools from Indiana did, and all of them are in the Midwest Bracket. Congrats to Indiana, Purdue, Butler, and Valparaiso.
I guess I should congratulate Notre Dame too. I should. But I won't.
The Jinx is Busted!
By the end of the night, he was arrested and charged with murder. Incredible.
The Washington Post has all the details.
Behind the Scenes at WGN Radio
Rick likes to broadcast in the 7th floor studio in the Tribune Tower instead of the showcase studio on Michigan Avenue, and this was my first time doing a show there. The atmosphere was incredibly relaxed, and Rick made me feel at home right away. I've gotten to know him pretty well over the past 20 years and there was a lot to talk about.
We discussed my book "Father Knows Nothing" of course. Kogan was the first interviewer to really get to the heart of this book. He realized that it was inspired by my own father, and he could feel the specter of my dad throughout. He read excerpts and was very kind, calling it my "best book ever." But the highlight of the interview for me was when he called Tommy to the microphone and interviewed him about what it was like to have a book written about him. This boy who was literally on the radio when he was only 2 hours old, performed very well. I was proud of him.
But more importantly, he was flying high. The kid (not so much a kid anymore--he's 19) who never gets excited about anything was REALLY excited on his way out the door. "Dad," he said, putting his hand on my shoulder, "That was soooo cool."
But putting Tommy on the air is the nicest thing he's ever done.
For one day, I'm a hero in my house.
Thanks so much for that, Rick.
(When the podcast is posted on the WGN website, I'll post it here too.)
Every Cub Ever (R)
What will you find there? A Hall of Famer, 20 classic baseball cards, 11 videos, two incredibly notorious fans, four executives, two managers, two Cub scribes, the most famous Cubs broadcaster ever, two brothers, three Cubs named Rice, a 1908 Cub, two 1969 Cubs, a current Cubs star, a Cub born in Germany, a Cubs artist, a fictional character, and the pitcher who served up Babe Ruth’s alleged called shot.
Check it out here.
How to Write a Love Song
The Real Pi
He said "I know, I'm the biggest nerd ever."
To which I replied: "I just spent an entire year writing bios of every Cub ever. Let's call it a draw."