Monday, October 31, 2005

semi-automatic Charmin

During the high school football highlights on Friday night, one of the local TV channels had a brief shot of somebody using a leaf blower to send toilet paper streaming into the stands. A prankster could defile a lot of trees with that equipment. This classic Halloween trick on steroids turns out to be an actual science experiment demonstrating Bernoulli's Principle. A TV station in Cincinnati even has easy to follow instructions on its website. How many super TPers will be out tonight? I'm hoping that the kids most likely to TP a house are the same ones who cut science class and never heard of Bernoulli.
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Sunday, October 30, 2005

didn't need to buy or rent a costume

Last night my wife and I went to an '80s themed Halloween party. The best costume belonged to Danielle, who went as a Rubik's Cube.

Wes Hope shaved his chin, leaving just a mustache for his Magnum PI costume. Wes' daughter was dressed as a Whoopie Cushion. I almost wore the same thing as Todd Covert, who looked very preppy.

After checking an '80s costume website and asking listeners for ideas, I ended up dressing as (a bearded) Ed Grimley.

We knew it was time to leave when the guy in the Chewbacca suit started making beefcake poses on the floor.

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Saturday, October 29, 2005

gotta get back in time

Daylight Saving Time ends tonight. One year at WAVA, Bean Baxter and I put together a one hour show to fill the extra time when 2:00 a.m. becomes 1:00 a.m. again. It was called "The 25th Hour" and featured songs with "time" in the title or lyrics.

Almost every year somebody writes an article about the increase in traffic accidents after the time change. Most of the accidents occur in the Spring when we lose an hour of sleep but apparently there is a slight increase in the Fall too.

One Spring, Bean and I had to take a business trip from Los Angeles to Lake Havasu City on the weekend of the time change. We drove to Arizona on a Friday and set our watches an hour ahead when we crossed from Pacific Time into the Mountain Time Zone. Because Arizona doesn't observe Daylight Saving Time, we didn't have to spring forward on Saturday night. When we drove back to California on Sunday, there was no need to change our watches. Pacific Daylight Time is the same as Mountain Standard Time.

The experience of springing ahead on a Friday was much better. The loss of an hour's sleep was easier to deal with over the two day weekend. Some people believe that Daylight Saving Time should be abolished altogether. I think the government should at least change Daylight Saving Time so that we start and end it on a Friday night / Saturday morning. How do I make this happen?
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Friday, October 28, 2005

so good it makes your nose run and eyes water

There are still several hours of BBQ related programs on my TiVo that I haven't watched because I thought it would be too tempting since joining the LA Weight Loss program. My wife and I have been making good progress with our weight loss so I felt confident enough to watch a few episodes of "BBQ with Bobby Flay" and "All-Star BBQ Challenge."

We're allowed to use 1 tablespoon of BBQ sauce as a condiment on the program (we're not supposed to call it a diet). Thanks to Shane Cox, I don't even need that much. I worked for Shane at The River when I first moved to Tennessee. He's now in sales at the Journal Broadcast Group. One day I brought some Cholula hot sauce to work to put on a hard boiled egg. Shane and I got talking about spicy foods. The next day he gave me a bottle of Pappy's Moonshine Madness BBQ sauce. I've used it to season some chicken and turkey and I don't think there's any way I could ever exceed my 1 tablespoon daily allowance.
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Thursday, October 27, 2005


This afternoon on "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire" a former lawyer turned club deejay was the contestant. "DJ L Boogie" was asked about her "uncanny ability to identify music even with the weirdest clues." She told an anecdote about being able to recognize "Drop It Like It's Hot" from a series of mouth clicks.

I recorded the audio and edited it so that it goes right from her story to the appropriate question. Perhaps y
ou can see where this is headed. In fact, you should hear the confidence in her voice when she says "I think I've got it" before she chooses from "Yeah," "Hey Ya," "Crazy In Love," or "In Da Club."
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Wednesday, October 26, 2005

just in time for Halloween

There was a scene in "Batman Begins" that made me pause for a second and realize how much I was enjoying the film. It happens when Batman is surrounded by a swarm of actual bats. I've had an interest in bats since I was a kid. Of course, I watched the daily syndicated reruns of the classic TV "Batman." Plus, my father handled public relations for Bacardi Rum in the 1960s and '70s. We always had items with the Bacardi Bat Device around the house.

We have some bats in our neighborhood. I usually see them at dusk during the summer months as they sweep down to eat bugs. A recent newspaper article mentioned some pro-bat websites that are worth a look: Bat World and Bat Conservation International. Some day I want to get a bat house for the back yard.

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Tuesday, October 25, 2005

you see why that's funny...

Thursday night's TV schedule is still kicking my butt. If NBC moves "My Name Is Earl" to Thursdays, my brain might melt. This past Thursday, I caught the last ten minutes of "Everybody Hates Chris" when I got home. My family and I watched "Survivor" on TiVo that night and watched "C.S.I." over the weekend. We still haven't watched "Alias" but my son and I did get caught up on "Smallville" last night.

Half the fun of watching "Smallville" is in doing a MST3K style commentary with my son. We love to mock the mountainous "Kansas" landscape and other cheesy aspects of the show. This past week's episode featured Aquaman who, by the way, was having the "Best Week Ever" according to VH1. At one point in the episode, Lex Luthor was holding Aquaman captive and interrogating him. Lex wanted to know if Aquaman was part of an environmentalist group. Aquaman responded by saying, "I don't travel with an entourage."

The scenes for this Thursday's episode included James Marsters delivering the line, "Clark, there's no such thing as vampires!"
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Monday, October 24, 2005

available for weddings, bar mitzvahs, proms...

Tonight's episode of "The King of Queens" sounds promising. The subplot involves Patton Oswalt and TV's Batman:
After convincing Lou Ferrigno to accompany him to the annual Sci-Fi convention, Spence spots Adam West in the subway and figures Batman would be a bigger coup than the Incredible Hulk. But Spence's plan unravels when he realizes that West and Ferrigno are old buddies and have caught on to his super hero double dipping.
Patton Oswalt was often a guest on one of the afternoon shows at the old Comedy World Radio Network. I worked for one of the morning shows at the network and didn't get to meet him. I read somewhere that he used to live in the D.C. suburbs and listened to WAVA during the time I worked there. When I looked at his website and saw that he and I both worked as mobile deejays in the '80s for the same small company, I wondered how I could have not yet crossed paths with him.

The last time I went to a taping of "Jimmy Kimmel Live," Patton was one of the guests. Marc Anthony and I were seated in the front row. (I wore an orange shirt.) Patton, Jimmy and Terry O'Quinn all took part in a knife-throwing bit at our end of the stage. I was able to introduce myself to Patton during a commercial break since he was standing right in front of me. I briefly mentioned that we had both worked for Sounds Unlimited in Virginia and Patton said I should email him about it. I did, further detailing the bizarre coincidences. Patton's reply was "Holy s***, that's amazing. I wonder if that company still exists."

Last month I got an email out of the blue from Steve McIntire, the guy who used to run Sounds Unlimited. He wrote that he had sold that company in 1990 but had gotten back into the deejay business about 5 years ago. His new company is called That Oldies Place. In response to my questions about Patton Oswalt, Steve remembered that Patton deejayed the homecoming dances at Broad Run High School several years in a row. Steve was fairly proud of how well Patton has done. I guess Steve hasn't had time to read every blog entry on Patton's website.
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Sunday, October 23, 2005

they filmed us on a warm day

This morning's Knoxville News Sentinel has an article about the local comedy scene that includes coverage of Einstein Simplified. There's a photo of me, in shorts, being moved by an audience member during a game called Animatronics. In addition to the article, the paper's website has a video feature that includes footage from a couple of our improv shows.

A lot of our friends say they can't usually make it downtown to Patrick Sullivan's on a Tuesday night to see Einstein Simplified perform. On Saturday, November 5th we're doing a 6pm dinner show at The Comedy Zone in West Knoxville. Hope you can be there.

Speaking of The Comedy Zone, they are hosting auditions tomorrow night for Nick at Nite's Search for the Funniest Mom in America 2.
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Saturday, October 22, 2005

lost highway

Celebrity deaths hold a fascination for many people. In Hollywood you can take a three hour tour of famous death sites. The Internet has pages called "Celebrity Death Sites" and "Where the Stars Died."

One of Knoxville's claims to fame is that Hank Williams spent his last night alive here. He died in the car on his way out of town. Tonight his memory was honored with the third annual "Hank Days" festival. Since Hank died on either New Year's Eve or Day, I don't understand why the festival is in October. The festival includes a Jambalaya cookoff and "I'm So Lonesome I Could Cry Speed Dating." Maybe we should rename a street after him. Or at least an exit ramp.
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Friday, October 21, 2005

roll out the barrel

It's Friday! Let's party with some monkeys!!

I was shopping with my wife when I picked up an advertising flyer called the Kids Directory . The ad for "Monkeys on a Mission" made me want to race home to look at their website.

There is so much that's peculiar about the SunShine MonkeyShines site I don't know where to begin. Is it the photo inviting you to "shake hands with the monkey?" Or maybe it's the page that suggests hiring monkeys for your wedding reception or to visit an assisted living facility? Or perhaps it's the quote from a child about a monkey: "Kizzy looks just like my Grandma, only short!"
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Thursday, October 20, 2005

time circuits on, flux capacitor fluxing

Many top-40 stations have a nightly feature where they play two new songs and listeners vote for their favorite. The feature has a name like "Zoom It or Doom It" or "Love It or Shove It" or something like that. Feel free to post a comment with the name of the feature in your area.

Anyway, tonight on Star 102.1's feature called "Star Wars" the two new songs battling it out were "Pretty Vegas" by INXS and the returning champion, "Hung Up" by Madonna. This is 2005, right? Oh by the way, INXS won.

Meanwhile, Van Halen has shot down reports that they would follow the lead of INXS and appear on a second season of "Rock Star."
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the bag in the photo contains 2982 calories

This past Spring I got deeply involved with Dark Chocolate M&Ms. They were so good I decided to never eat a regular milk chocolate M&M again. But there was a catch. The dark chocolate ones were only available for a limited time as part of a "Star Wars" tie-in.

As the M&Ms started disappearing from store shelves, I went into panic mode. One June night I was on all fours in Walgreens hoping to find a bag of dark
mixed in among the milks on the bottom shelf of the candy aisle. They had no dark left. A few days later I bought all six remaining bags of dark from a CVS. Clearly I had a problem. I confessed my addiction to Marc & Kim on the radio, hoping listeners would call and tell me where they had spotted any remaining bags. I continued hoarding dark chocolate M&Ms, buying them from convenience stores off the beaten track in Morristown throughout July and August.

This past week I received a package in the mail at work. A listener had found one bag of dark chocolate M&Ms at K-Mart. Our radio show had gotten into her head so much that she thought of us in the middle of a weekend shopping excursion. She bought the bag and mailed it to me.
Around it was wrapped a letter that I found amusing.

What Natasha didn't know is that a month ago I decided to deal with my expanding middle. I've always been a little sensitive about being overweight. I started thinking about it seriously when Marc described me on the air as "pear shaped." When the program director approached me about endorsing a weight loss program, I thought to myself "take a hint!" I've lost 10 pounds so far and next week my wife and I will begin doing radio commercials for
L A Weight Loss. (We don't have to pay for the program in exchange for doing the endorsement spots.)

So, what do I do with the M&Ms? Can I save them for when I meet my weight loss goal? Will they still taste good a year from now? Maybe we could gift wrap them and label the package "Do Not Open Until Christmas... 2006."
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Wednesday, October 19, 2005

blues are settin' in

Today is one of the saddest days of the year for me. My backyard pool is now closed for the winter. The guys from the pool company came today to embalm it with antifreeze and pull the shroud-like cover over it. This year we bought cinderblocks to hold the cover down rather than the water bags we used last year. The water bags were supposed to be reusable but every one of them leaked.

The weather today was beautiful. It was 80 degrees with low humidity. I knew I had to go for one last swim before the pool men arrived. I haven't been swimming for a couple of weeks because the water had gotten too cold but I decided to brave it anyway. I stood in the shallow end for a while trying to get used to it. The water temperature was 68 degrees and felt bracingly cold as
I did a couple of laps. When I got out, my toes looked almost as blue as Leonardo DiCaprio at the end of "Titanic."
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Tuesday, October 18, 2005

the worst are those who only listen to NPR

When you work in radio, everyone you meet wants to tell you about their listening habits. A lot of the time they tell you how they only listen to your competition. While they are talking I'm usually wondering how they would feel if I did the same to them. What if I told the domestic auto salesman how much I love Hondas? What if I spent 10 minutes telling the Hostess man how Little Debbie's prices are so much better?

Two Knoxville stations where I used to work recently changed to "Earl" and "Jack." I've been hearing about it almost everywhere I've been since Friday. Most people are asking about their favorite deejays who are now gone. I haven't talked to Sarah from The River yet but her blog gives an update. One of my wife's friends got an email from Ashley Adams saying that she is moving down the hall to the lite rock station in that cluster.

The best comment about Earl/Jack came today after a business meeting. A woman who had sampled the two stations said they sounded like the Muzak you hear in Chili's.

In other radio news, Kristen Hammond has a new website announcing her upcoming move to San Diego where she will marry the legendary Jeff & Jer.
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floppin' naked callback

The movie "Sideways" has been showing on HBO this week. One of the funniest scenes involves a floppin' naked guy played by M.C. Gainey.

One of my first entries when I started this blog was about interviewing Jessica Simpson prior to the "Dukes of Hazzard" premiere in Knoxville. M.C. Gainey plays Rosco P. Coltrane in the movie so naturally I asked Jessica what she thought of his floppin' naked scene in "Sideways" and naturally she had no idea what I was talking about.

Sometimes I get in the mood to check my web statistics report, which tells me how many hits I get during a week and what search terms are leading people to my site. Turns out that putting the words "Jessica, Simpson and naked" in the same sentence will get you some new readers. It shouldn't have surprised me but it did.

Some more obscure search terms showed up in the results too. Somebody searched Google for "man eating alligator" and found me. A search for the name "Michael Anthony Groover" (Paula Deen's husband) also led some people to my blog. Oh great. Now I have the image of a floppin' naked Michael Anthony Groover running down the street being chased by a man eating alligator.
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Monday, October 17, 2005

cold war memorial

One month from today will be the 50th anniversary of a top secret plane crash that killed my uncle Terry O'Donnell. I never knew him but I do know that he was loved by his family. Everything I have ever heard about him identifies him as a true hero and role model. My cousin Terry Hatton (another hero) was named after our late uncle. A group in Las Vegas is trying to establish a permanent memorial to the crash that killed 14 men. The Silent Heroes of the Cold War committee hopes to unveil the architectural plans for the memorial on November 17 during an event at the Mount Charleston Hotel in Nevada. An architect named George Tate is working on several designs for the family members to review. Once a design is selected, it must be approved by the U.S. Forest Service.
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Sunday, October 16, 2005

less rock, more talk

Entertainment Weekly devotes almost all their pages to covering movies, television, books, music and theater. Rarely do they cover radio, the entertainment medium that reaches 200 million Americans each week. In the current issue there's an article called "Lost in Transmission" which diagnoses some of radio's ills.

One sidebar to the article gives a glimmer of hope. They mention four trends we should watch (or listen) for. The most promising is Neo-Radio, which they describe as:
"Not a technology, but rather an approach that returns localization and unique
programming to the dial."
Many stations have been switching to an automated music format devoid of personality. To compensate for the boring presentation they give the station a guy's name like Jack or Earl, etc. The people who run these stations think they can compete with the music on satellite radio or iPods. They can't. Unique programming doesn't mean playing "One Night in Bangkok" followed by "Smells Like Teen Spirit." Unique programming means creating a show that can't be found anywhere else. The best way to do that is with deejays and talk show hosts who can make a connection with their listeners.

I still love radio and I want to see it snap out of the doldrums. I want to see more personality, more morning shows, more talk shows, more deejays and less automation. If only I could talk some sense into the radio business. There's so much on my mind. Maybe I should write a letter.

Dear Music Radio,
You know that guy you've been living with, Record Company? You should totally break up with him. He treats you like dirt. Sure he gives you free CDs, but you still have to pay the ASCAP bill every month. Besides, I hear he's cheating on you with some chick called Internet or iTunes or something like that. And what about the times he left money on your desk to play some crappy J-Lo song repeatedly? Doesn't that make you a prostitute?

You need some self respect. Do something original instead of just following Record Company around like a puppy. Your brother, Talk Radio may be a windbag but at least he does some good for the community and people listen to him. Your cousin in the Midwest, Farm Report Radio, may not have fancy gold records on the wall but at least she's earned everything she has. Your grandparents had to make their own sound effects and write their own scripts and people loved them for it! I used to think that your sister was the black sheep of the family when she started dating that Shock Jock but now it's you I'm ashamed of. You're wasting your life. Adopt some baby deejays and teach them the ropes. Do it now before it's too late.

Your fan,
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Saturday, October 15, 2005

it slices! it dices!

An ad in the paper said that the Sharpest Man in Texas is coming to town. Apparently he's also the Sharpest Man in Missouri. Expecting some sort of trivia challenge, I continued reading. Turns out his name is Reggie Barker and he is going to cut through water bottles at the Smoky Mountain Knife Works today as part of the ICCT tour. I don't have any interest in hunting but I find the photos of 10 water bottles being cut at once to be oddly fascinating.
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Friday, October 14, 2005

tempting fate

Tomorrow's Powerball jackpot is around $290 million. My grandmother asked me to buy her a ticket using the same numbers as Hurley on "Lost." So I did.

Imagine how many winners there would be if these numbers actually came in. Grandma's winnings could be almost $100.
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Thursday, October 13, 2005

please notify David Spade

On tonight's "Access Hollywood," they gave Billy Bush a cupcake for his birthday. I emailed Billy to wish him well and to ask why they've been doing the show from Johnny Carson Park in Burbank for the past few weeks. Here's his reply:
-----Original Message-----
From: Billy Bush
Sent: Thursday, October 13, 2005
To: Frank Murphy
Subject: Re: Happy Birthday

Thanks buddy. First day on new set is Wednesday. Its huge and sexy, like me.
Sent from my BlackBerry Wireless Handheld
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instrumental success

This may make me sound like a geek but as a kid I often bought soundtrack albums while my classmates were buying rock and pop albums. A couple of weeks ago the American Film Institute released a list of their top 25 film scores. Most of the obvious ones are on the list but there might be a few missing. I think the soundtrack to "The Natural" should be on the list as well as some Danny Elfman scores. I realize John Williams is already on the list three times but they left off "Raiders of the Lost Ark." What else is missing?
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Wednesday, October 12, 2005

moonwalking with Maury

Now that Jimmy Kimmel's show has been picked up for another year, you should start watching it. You've been missing great stuff like this paternity test bit.
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Since I last wrote about mashups, some listeners have told me about more sites worth visiting. Here's my updated list:
Just in time for Halloween, I found a "Monster Mash" mashup at the Sub Rosa site. The quality isn't great but it's good enough to enjoy the comedy of it.
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Tuesday, October 11, 2005

probably for the best

Star Jones was absent from "The View" today. The topic for the whole hour was "The View of Sex." The guests were Hugh Hefner & his three girlfriends, Sue Johanson and Candace Bushnell.
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above the fold

Congratulations to Brian Hartmann, Knoxville Catholic High School football player and son of News Sentinel publisher Bruce Hartmann. Brian had a good game against Webb School on Friday night and got his picture in Saturday's paper.

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Monday, October 10, 2005

an antique plane crashed into my homework

My consecutive blogging streak was broken yesterday. A vintage plane crashed into some fiberoptic cables along I-40. My house was one of several thousand that lost phone and Internet service for about 36 hours.

Obviously my condolences go to the pilot's family. But before I knew what caused me to lose touch with the outside world, I was trying everything I could think of to get my cable modem to work.

On Saturday night I unplugged and replugged the modem's power cord. I rebooted both computers in the house. I tried adjusting the antennae on the wireless router. After a while I gave up and decided to try again Sunday morning. When it still didn't work, I grabbed the phone to call Knology, the company that bundles my phone, Internet and cable TV service. The phone didn't work. The cable TV service still worked though. I borrowed my wife's cell phone to try calling Knology. I got an error message telling me my call could not be completed as dialed. I tried calling my own house and got the same error message. At this point I asked my wife if she had paid the Knology bill and the cell phone bill. She had. It wasn't her fault.

It started getting ridiculous when I grabbed a screwdriver and went outside to the phone and cable boxes on the side of the house. I opened up the boxes to make sure everything was connected. By coincidence a salesman from Comcast had come by the house Saturday afternoon to ask me if I wanted to switch from Knology to Comcast. I was thinking of him Sunday as I looked for a cut wire or unscrewed coax connection. Everything looked fine. It wasn't his fault.

Around this time my neighbor strolled down his driveway to retrieve the Sunday paper. I asked him if his phone and Internet worked. He's got a Comcast cable modem and Bell South phone service. Both worked fine. He let me borrow his phone to call Knology. I got a fast busy signal. The same thing happened when I called my own house. A call to my wife's cell phone went through, thank goodness. At least we had that. I called the cell number of a friend in North Knoxville who also has Knology. Her land line phone and Internet connection were down too. The problem was clearly bigger than just my house. I put the screwdriver away. It wasn't my fault.

I would have liked to get on the Internet yesterday to post to the blog. I've been able to write something new everyday since August 1. My streak ended at 69 days. Not very impressive. My desire to upload a couple of paragraphs about the latest TV Guide covers was eclipsed by my son's need to finish researching a paper for school.

Frank Jr. had already written most of his paper but it wasn't long enough. He needed to find a little more information to finish it. My wife and I thought about taking him and the laptop over to a Krystal restaurant with free WiFi but then we decided to take him to the library. Not only could he use the computer but maybe he could look something up in a book. My son actually told us that he needed the Internet for this paper because it might be hard to find a book on the topic. So I asked him to tell me what the paper was about. It was Greek mythology. Good thing mankind has finally invented the Internet so somebody can start typing up all those stories from 2500 years ago. I mean who ever heard of there being books about Greek mythology?

Anyway, our neighbor graciously offered to let Frank Jr. use the Internet. We didn't have to go downtown to the only library branch open on Sunday. Around 6:30 p.m. that day, we were in the car and finally heard the news about Knology's service outage on the audio simulcast of channel 6. Our phone and Internet service didn't come back on until sometime between 11:00 p.m. last night and 5:00 a.m. this morning. My new blogging streak starts today. Wish me luck.
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what would Frank Costanza do?

TV Guide is commemorating the end of an era. The magazine will soon be the same size as "People" or "Entertainment Weekly." As a farewell to the digest size, TV Guide is recreating famous covers of the past with current stars. I think my favorite re-creations is Regis and Kelly's "I Dream of Jeannie." Is there a TV Guide cover you will always remember?
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Saturday, October 08, 2005

football time in Tennessee

The Tennessee/Georgia game is about to start. It might be a good time to introduce quarterback Jim Bob Cooter to those of you not in Knoxville. The caption alongside this WVLT video story (for text version click here) says that Jim Bob has "quite possibly the most recognized name in college football." Huh?

If he's the most recognized name in college football, Jim Bob should be chosen as grand marshal of Spring Cooter Fest and should have his picture on the wall at Cooter's Place for life.
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none of them have a laugh track

Yesterday I wrote that "Arrested Development" is the funniest show on television. That got me thinking. What are the funniest prime time shows? Here's my top 5 list. Post your own list in the comments.
  1. Arrested Development
  2. Curb Your Enthusiasm
  3. The Office
  4. My Name Is Earl
  5. Everybody Hates Chris
As Frank Strovel III implied in a comment last night , "Scrubs" deserves a spot on the list of funniest shows when it finally comes back on the air. It's possible that "Curb" will have finished its season by the time "Scrubs" returns, which means I won't have to bump a show off the top 5 list. It's also possible that "Arrested Development" could be canceled by then, which would be a comedy tragedy.

What other shows am I missing? What are your top 5?
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Friday, October 07, 2005

taste my sad

The ratings for "Arrested Development" have not been good this season. I guess I should start resigning myself to the fact that it will eventually get canceled even though it is the funniest show on TV. The cast and writers are brilliant. I watch each episode at least two times to make it seem like they have been on the air twice as long. Plus I always catch a joke or two I missed the first time. The Balboa Observer-Picayune also helps me re-live the show's best moments. Have you tried watching it? Is there a reason you don't watch? The next episode airs one month from today (November 7) after the World Series ends.
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Thursday, October 06, 2005

a nice Wensleydale

My family and I saw an advance screening of "Wallace & Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit" last night. The movie started a little slowly but once you get to the "aha moment" of the plot, it's non-stop fun and excitement. There are some great sight gags and double-entendre jokes that run the gamut from Holst to nuts. After you have seen the movie, you will want to rent the short films "A Grand Day Out," "The Wrong Trousers" and "A Close Shave" if you haven't seen them already.
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a case of mistaken identity

The email from my friend Bean arrived with the subject line "sorry for your loss." The message had a link to a news story that said the house I was going to buy when I win the lottery had burned down. You would recognize my future mansion from the 1960s "Batman" tv series or maybe from the Kenneth Branagh film "Dead Again." But according to KNBC-TV it wasn't the same house after all! Somebody named Paul McCartney owns the house where I hope to live when I retire in Gotham City. By the way, while looking for photos of Stately Wayne Manor, I found a fun site called The Bat Pages.
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Wednesday, October 05, 2005

where exactly is that fish tattoo?

Kristen Hammond is a Knoxville radio personality and friend who occasionally comes to see Einstein Simplified perform. Now she's engaged to San Diego radio legends Jeff & Jer! Congratulations Kristen!
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Tuesday, October 04, 2005

today must be the day for that kind of thing

Speaking of pick-ups, NBC has picked up "My Name is Earl" for a full season. You may recall that the show was created by former WAVA intern Greg Garcia. Congratulations Greg!
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themesong performed by Robert Goulet

Congratulations to Jimmy Kimmel and the rest of his hard working staff. Their show has been picked up for another year by ABC. "Jimmy Kimmel Live" is a funny show that continues to improve. According to E! Online, several of the show's bits get circulated on

Jimmy and I worked together at KROQ and he has always been kind enough to appear on the radio with me since then. This past May, Marc Anthony and I did a remote broadcast from the "American Idol" radio junket in Los Angeles. One night we got tickets to the Kimmel show. Jimmy's assistant set us up with passes to the green room. On the way in through the stage door we had a chance to visit with the show's director, Bobcat Goldthwait.

Patton Oswalt was a guest on the show that night. Another day I will write about how he and I worked for the same mobile deejay company but never met.

After the show, Uncle Frank escorted us upstairs to Jimmy's dressing room. Jimmy asked about our remote broadcast. We were going to be on the air from 2:30 to 6:00 a.m. Pacific Time. By coincidence, he had to get up early the next morning to appear on "Good Morning America." He showed up at the Kodak Theatre for our broadcast at 4:15 a.m. Pacific Time before running across the street to his own studio. The other radio hosts on the junket were surprised to see Jimmy and all the more surprised that he was there to talk to the Knoxville deejays and not the ones from Detroit or Cleveland or Columbus.

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Monday, October 03, 2005

and I find it kinda funny

Thursday's episode of "regular C.S.I." featured a song that remained stuck in my head all weekend. I looked it up on the Internet and found out that it was "Mad World" by Gary Jules. The song is on the "Donnie Darko" soundtrack as well as one of Gary's albums. Tears for Fears also recorded it.

My friend Bean called a little while ago while I was researching the Gary Jules song. By sheer coincidence he had been listening to an MP3 of the song that's on his computer desktop. He didn't even know that the song had been on "C.S.I." last week.

Another "C.S.I." coincidence surprised me last week. On Thursday afternoon I wrote about the Las Vegas hotel room where John Entwistle died. On Thursday night's episode of "C.S.I." Dr. Robbins snapped a photo of the dead body of a celebrity. He said the photo would go on his wall between Tupac and Entwistle.
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Sunday, October 02, 2005

take a little time to enjoy the view

Star Jones took a day off from "The View" on Friday. Sarah Ferguson filled in for her. It had to be just a coincidence that Star was absent the day after the lead story on Page Six was about the end of her red carpet duties for the E! channel. The story turned up Friday in newspapers in other cities including Pittsburgh, Cleveland, Phoenix and Washington and all over the Internet on entertainment news sites and gossip blogs. I wonder how Star spent her Friday. I can imagine her (and Al) futilely trying to buy every copy of every newspaper in the country. What day do the supermarket tabloids hit the stands? She may need another day off.
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Saturday, October 01, 2005

we know they're together by their matching shirts

On Tuesday, I wondered how CBS would handle the participation of the Black family on "The Amazing Race: Family Edition." ran this screen grab showing how the words "Black Family" were superimposed every time Mr. & Mrs. Black and their children were onscreen. Last night's "Best Week Ever" had a segment about the Amazing Race which included a brief in-studio appearance by the Black family, wearing their tie-dye shirts. Their race was never an issue in the race but one thing did give me pause. During the first leg of the race, the teams usually haven't learned each others names. It's interesting to hear the teams refer to each other as "the Rugrats" or "the Blondes" or "the family from Florida." Toward the end of Tuesday's episode I did hear someone refer to the Black family by using their actual surname. Or at least that's what I thought they meant.
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