Friday, April 10, 2020

Great Version


I've been making fun of AARP since Landecker was old enough to join (1997) and I wrote a song about it called "Baby Boomers".

I can't believe it's come to this, but I pulled the trigger today after nearly 7 years of fighting it since I became eligible myself. I sent in for my AARP card. What the heck, it comes with a free trunk organizer. Hard to pass up a deal like that.

The sort of thing my e-mail box is flooded with these days

Keep 'em coming...

Randy Newman

Last Supper 2020

Thanks to "SS" for sending this to me...

A Father Much Better Than I

Siblings Day

Today is "Siblings Day". It's been a long time since I've been in the same room as my two siblings Cindy Kaempfer and Peter Kaempfer, but here's a shot from last summer.

The Cuomo Brothers

RIP Mort Drucker

One of my favorite MAD Magazine illustrators has died. He was 91.

Newsweek has his obit.

I still have a box of my old Mad Magazines. Mort famously illustrated the Star Wars spoof, among many others.

Thursday, April 09, 2020

This is our country

During a pandemic sweeping across the country, the US Government has decided that none of their health experts will be allowed to appear on one of the all-news networks (CNN) unless they agree to cover every second of Trump's rambling, and often dishonest press briefings. I'm not kidding...

Vice President Mike Pence's office has declined to allow the nation's top health officials to appear on CNN in recent days and discuss the coronavirus pandemic killing thousands of Americans, in an attempt to pressure the network into carrying the White House's lengthy daily briefings in full.

Pence's office, which is responsible for booking the officials on networks during the pandemic, said it will only allow experts such as Dr. Deborah Birx or Dr. Anthony Fauci to appear on CNN if the network televises the portion of the White House briefings that includes the vice president and other coronavirus task force members.

This is our country under Trump. Its depressing beyond belief.

Sunset in Mt. Prospect

There's a snow advisory for tonight (ugh) but last night was beautiful in Mt. Prospect. I snapped a few photos to show you...

What He Said

Wednesday, April 08, 2020

Amy & Bradley

A special extendo-dance remix interview with Amy Landecker and her husband Bradley Whitford. Some great stories here. Thanks again to Amy & Brad for doing it.

Landecker Succeeded by Making Connections

Radio World has a new article about the latest inductee into the NAB Hall of Fame, my old pal John Records Landecker. Here's an excerpt...

“John Records Landecker has had a profound impact on radio and has inspired generations of new talent,” said NAB Executive Vice President of Industry Affairs Steve Newberry. “His induction into the Broadcasting Hall of Fame symbolizes the personal connection between DJs and their audiences and how innovative personalities can influence radio programming.”

Most stories about Landecker start out explaining that Records was not just a clever addition to his name to play off his radio work. The origins of that can be traced back to his mother’s maiden name.

In fact, his autobiography is titled “Records Really is My Middle Name.” In addition, he has released six albums based on his bits and satirical songs accumulated through his career.

Landecker, 73, was born in Ann Arbor, Mich., just outside Detroit, and his earliest memories of radio are of several hometown AM radio stations that were fairly typical of that time.

“I didn’t really tune in for the music or even recall that part of it. But the announcers did everything. They hosted talk shows, read sports and weather, they did call-in buy and sell shows and remotes. I found it fascinating. So I began tape recording myself around the house,” Landecker said.

His father had a Dictaphone that Landecker was allowed to play with, and when he first heard his voice come out of it he was convinced that radio would be his career choice.

“I just knew it even at a very young age. Maybe it was part ego, but I wanted to be the guy on the radio talking to people through this magic box,” Landecker said.

You can read the whole article here.

RIP John Prine

Lost another one last night, the great singer/songwriter from Chicago John Prine. He died of CoronaVirus. Couldn't decide which Prine song to feature here today, but I settled on this one...

Bruce Springsteen chimes in...

Tuesday, April 07, 2020

Irony is dead

Do I really need to explain my headline?

I don't want to see the outtakes

Hard to Argue with This

From today's Atlantic, written by David Frum...

That the pandemic occurred is not Trump’s fault. The utter unpreparedness of the United States for a pandemic is Trump’s fault. The loss of stockpiled respirators to breakage because the federal government let maintenance contracts lapse in 2018 is Trump’s fault. The failure to store sufficient protective medical gear in the national arsenal is Trump’s fault. That states are bidding against other states for equipment, paying many multiples of the precrisis price for ventilators, is Trump’s fault. Air travelers summoned home and forced to stand for hours in dense airport crowds alongside infected people? That was Trump’s fault too. Ten weeks of insisting that the coronavirus is a harmless flu that would miraculously go away on its own? Trump’s fault again. The refusal of red-state governors to act promptly, the failure to close Florida and Gulf Coast beaches until late March? That fault is more widely shared, but again, responsibility rests with Trump: He could have stopped it, and he did not.

The lying about the coronavirus by hosts on Fox News and conservative talk radio is Trump’s fault: They did it to protect him. The false hope of instant cures and nonexistent vaccines is Trump’s fault, because he told those lies to cover up his failure to act in time. The severity of the economic crisis is Trump’s fault; things would have been less bad if he had acted faster instead of sending out his chief economic adviser and his son Eric to assure Americans that the first stock-market dips were buying opportunities. The firing of a Navy captain for speaking truthfully about the virus’s threat to his crew? Trump’s fault. The fact that so many key government jobs were either empty or filled by mediocrities? Trump’s fault. The insertion of Trump’s arrogant and incompetent son-in-law as commander in chief of the national medical supply chain? Trump’s fault.

For three years, Trump has blathered and bluffed and bullied his way through an office for which he is utterly inadequate. But sooner or later, every president must face a supreme test, a test that cannot be evaded by blather and bluff and bullying. That test has overwhelmed Trump.

The full piece is here. It's excellent. It's true. It's not Fake News.

This is cool

One World

Every crisis needs a celebrity concert to combat it. This weekend is the first CoronaVirus special. Via NPR News...

Global Citizen and the World Health Organization announced One World: Together At Home, a Live Aid-style event designed to celebrate healthcare workers around the globe and to support the U.N. Foundation's COVID-19 Response Fund.. The concert will be broadcast live on TV and on social media Saturday, April 18 at 8 p.m. ET.

Curated by Lady Gaga, the festival promises performances from Paul McCartney, Stevie Wonder, Billie Eilish and Lizzo, as well as appearances from non-musicians like David Beckham. In addition to boasting one of the flashiest lineups of the hundreds of live streamed concerts that have been organized over the past several weeks, the Global Citizen event also will be one of the most widely available. In a press release, Global Citizen writes that the stream will be broadcast on all the major American television networks as well as virtually every social media platform.

Monday, April 06, 2020

RIP Al Kaline

He died today at the age of 85. One of the all-time greats. For some reason, I only have one Al Kaline baseball card in my collection. This one from 1972...

RIP Pussy Galore

Honor Blackman, better known to us as Pussy Galore, passed away today at the age of 94. RIP.

You Got a Friend in Me

If you want positivity these days, follow former basketball star Rex Chapman on Twitter. He finds heartwarming gems like this every day...

The numbers are artificially low

When you hear the numbers of CoronaVirus patients in Illinois, remember this. They are only beginning testing now. Only beginning. Don't believe me? Look at this...

Make Your Own Mask

Minutia Men--A Corona Show with Shoeless Joe

Rick and Dave discuss Malaysian CoronaVirus don’ts, play a few CoronaVirus ditties, ask inappropriate French CoronaVirus questions, Rick tells about his brush with the recently departed Adam Schlessinger, and they interview the man who once played Shoeless Joe Jackson–actor DB Sweeney. [Ep174]

Listen to it here.