Friday, February 09, 2018

Minutia Men, Episode 83

EP83 – Rick and Dave discuss McDonald’s fries curing baldness, the biggest dick on the Eagles, a Goodwill gift for the ages, a Cubs gangster, and Rick’s brush with comedian Tim Allen.

Listen to it here.

6 inches

Get your mind out of the gutter. That's how much snow we got last night. The boys are out there shoveling right now. We're expecting two more waves of snow over the weekend--up to another foot.

Photos from yesterday's John Landecker Graduation

The whole thing was a secret. John Landecker thought he was going to Grand Valley State University (the college he attended in the mid-60s) to do a Q&A session about his book "Records Truly Is My Middle Name". That happened...but when it was winding down, the Dean of the university came in and gave John his surprise. They had accumulated his college credits from all the schools he attended, and awarded him his last few hours because of an independent writing assignment (his book), and it turned out he had enough credits to finally graduate...53 years after he took his first class.

I will have the full report in next month's Illinois Entertainer, but in the meantime here are a few photos...

Lee Kingsmill on WGN

In many ways, the Nick Digilio show was the perfect place for Lee Kingsmill to talk about his memoir "Safe Inside". The two men share a love of movies and the old movie palaces as you can hear in this podcast taken from DiGilio's Thursday's morning show.

Listen to it here.

Wednesday, February 07, 2018

On Assignment

I'm on assignment the next two days working on my March column for the Illinois Entertainer. It's an exciting story, and I'll share the details when I finish it.

In the meantime, I'll be taking a two-day break on the blog. Back on Friday.

The latest episode of Minutia Men will drop tomorrow at it's usual time.

Insight into the Hairdo

It's a miracle of modern science, but you can get a glimpse into how Trump does it after watching the wind take it in this video...

Homering on first MLB pitch

There have been 30 players in history to hit a homer on their very first pitch in the big leagues. Two of them are Cubs, including the most recent one to do it, Willson Contreras in 2016. (I was there for that game--it was Father's Day)

Of the 30, 15 did it last century, 15 have done it since the turn of this century.

The full list and their stories are here.

Radio Hall of Fame

From this morning's RAMP Newsletter...

The 30th Annual National Radio Hall of Fame Induction ceremony and celebration is moving to New York City in mid-November. From now through March 30, the NRHOF Nominating Committee is accepting suggestions for 2018 nominees. Kraig Kitchin, Chairman of the National Radio Hall of Fame, commented, "We're looking forward to celebrating this milestone anniversary in New York City. As we prepare for the special evening, it's our priority to provide everyone the opportunity to be a part of it, starting with suggestions for our 2018 nominees."

Suggestions should be made for individuals in the following categories: Longstanding Local/Regional (20 years or more), Active Local/Regional (10 years or more), Networks/Syndication (10 years or more), Longstanding Network/Syndication (20 years or more), Music Format On-Air Personality, and/or Spoken Word On-Air Personality. Leading radio imaging and production company The Mix Group is the presenting sponsor of the National Radio Hall of Fame Induction ceremony.

To submit your chosen candidates for consideration, visit and click on the NOMINATE tab.

Last year I nominated John Landecker, and it actually worked! (I suspect, however, that I wasn't the only one who did so).

Safe Inside

Eckhartz Press author Lee Kingsmill taped an interview last night with WGN Radio's Nick Digilio. It will air either tonight or tomorrow night on Nick's overnight show.

When I get the podcast link, I'll post it.

Lee's book is incredible
, and it appears that Nick was quite taken with it. I understand why. I was quite taken by it too.

I blame Fox News

Seriously, I do. They have conspiracy theory nonsense on in prime time and do not differentiate it from their two or three actual journalists. Right wing fans (even smart ones) start believing crap that if they thought about it for a few moments, would realize is completely insane. The result is this...

SpaceX Launch

This was one of the coolest things I've ever seen. It reminded me of the excitement I felt as a youngster during the Apollo days. The most incredible part to me was the landing of booster rockets back on earth. Incredible...

Tuesday, February 06, 2018

A Rumor You Wouldn't Deny

According to Deadspin, word from the Eagles locker room is that quarterback Nick Foles has a giant pecker.

His nickname in college, again according to Deadspin, was "Big Dick Nick" and "Footlong Foles"

Needless to say, Foles has not denied this report.

Heinie Zimmermann

A great Cubs player, but a notorious one. He was run out of baseball for cheating, and he ended up working for New York gangster Dutch Schultz.

RIP John Mahoney

John Mahoney passed away yesterday at the age of 77. His friends at the Steppenwolf Theater in Chicago were so upset yesterday they cancelled the night's performance and hung out at the bar in the lobby, toasting their good friend.

I met John several times over the years. The Chicago-area native was a down-to-earth nice guy--exactly like you'd expect if you've him on television and films.

I know most of the tributes to him over the past 24 hours have been about his great role on Frasier (including this touching one by Frasier writer/director Ken Levine), but to me, I will always remember him as the manager of the Chicago Black Sox in the movie "Eight Men Out"...


In case you missed it last night, John Landecker was on WGN Radio with Justin Kaufmann. Great interview. You can listen to it here.

Monday, February 05, 2018

Art Imitates Life

Donald Trump's favorite show was skewered on Saturday Night...

And this morning, Trump proved the point of the skit.

It's impossible to be a satirist these days.

Fred Winston

Thanks so much to Robert Feder who mentioned my latest interview with Fred Winston in his column this morning...

Illinois Entertainer’s February issue checks in with Chicago radio legend Fred Winston. “I guess I am retired,” he told Rick Kaempfer, “although I don’t feel like it’s done. I’m always reticent to say that I’m done now because I do feel like I could drop back behind the mic and with a little DW40 in the mouth, I could pick up where I left off.” Winston, 71, who first joined WLS AM 890 in 1971 when it was a Top 40 powerhouse, last worked full-time in 2013 at classic hits WLS FM 94.7. He’s busier than ever on his Berrien County farm in Southwest Michigan. “The frustrating thing about being a gentleman farmer . . . are the many tiny engines that need spark plugs and oil changes. Rather than flap my mouth, I now bang my knuckles.”

You can read the entire Fred interview here.

Uma Thurman

Maureen Dowd wrote the story about Uma in yesterday's New York Times, and if you haven't seen it yet, it's pretty damning to both Harvey Weinstein (who sexually assaulted her) and Quintin Tarantino (who treated her cruelly).

Holocaust Denier Running for Congress in Illinois

Another proud moment for Illinois politics. The man's name is Arthur Jones, and he's already secured the GOP nomination in the upcoming primary because he is running unopposed. From this morning's Washington Post...

Arthur Jones has a campaign website.

It outlines the Republican candidate’s education background, his stance on issues and how to donate to his campaign to represent the Illinois’s 3rd Congressional District.

It also lays out Jones’s unapologetically racist and anti-Semitic views.

In a section called “Holocaust?” Jones describes the atrocities as a “racket” and “the biggest, blackest, lie in history.” Under another tab titled “Flags of Conflict,” he lists the Confederate flag first and describes it as “a symbol of White pride and White resistance” and “the flag of a White counter revolution.”

And in his most recent blog post — dated Aug. 24, 2017 — Jones railed against “Radical Leftists” and blamed them for starting racial violence in Charlottesville about two weeks before.

He's running against Congressman Bill Lipinski. Probably won't beat the Congressman, but sheesh. This is a scary country we're living in these days.


Last night's episode of "Divorce" on HBO featured the song "Magnet & Steel" by Walter Egan. I haven't heard that song in many years.

I remember the first time I heard it. I lived in Germany at the time, and I was listening to Casey Kasem's American Top 40 on Armed Forces Radio. This song immediately got my attention. Even though I was no more than 15 years old at the time, and was far from sophisticated, I thought "Wow, these are the worst lyrics I've ever heard."

You are the magnet. And I am the steel.

Now thanks to HBO's Divorce, I can't get the stupid song out of my head.

Big Weekend for Chicago Bears

But will his hair go with him?

This is worth at least 1/2 a Super Bowl share, wouldn't you say?

Berlin Wall Milestone

This is hard to believe. For a kid who grew up in West Germany, the wall seemed like it had been there forever. I remember the day it came down like it was yesterday.

It wasn't yesterday.