Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Phillies Fan Wears Jacket to Citi Field For College Game...Is Asked To Leave

It's a bit of a long story, but worth reading.

Via The 700 Level.

I'm on the fence on this one. Sure, I look forward to any chance to mock the Mets, their management and their fans. Yet I'm not sure if this guy was just trying to be difficult, and as a reporter/broadcaster, I know rule number one is "no rooting in the press box (or in this case, the camera platform).

If it had been me, I would have put on the St. John's jacket that they brought to me.

Just for the record, I'm always discreet in wearing my garb to a another team's building. For instance, last year at Fenway Park, I wore a polo shirt...with a Yankees T-shirt underneath. Virtually nobody knew.

Discretion, people!

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Off The Bench (or "There's Thunder and Lightning, so Be Quick!")

Sean Adams (once and forever, "The Son") will play for the Phillies this year. That means, I will be coaching the Phillies this year.

Mets fans smile and say "it figures."

People have asked what I would do if I had to coach a team named the Mets. Simple - I'd do my job, not wear the hat/uniform, and try to ignore that my poor son would have to wear one.

Just one more thing on the topic. If my son had to play for the Mets, he'd go nuts. Should have seen him today in Target when a kid walked by wearing a Mets T-shirt.

NCAA's - I got two out of four. Villanova and North Carolina made it for me. Damn you, Michigan State.

I really enjoyed the experience of the NCAA hockey tournament in Bridgeport on Friday. Sadly the games were not so good. Michigan fell to Air Force and in the nightcap, in front of an excited crowd, Yale absolutely laid an egg.

Give Sean Patrick Bowley some love for the writing. I still think he looked like he reigned supreme at the center of press row in the Arena at Harbor Yard, despite his denial. Of course, yesterday's regional final was pretty good.

Vermont hockey fans were rather cocky sorts. And a memo to them about us not doing the wave (and I was sitting right next to them):

Many people HATE the wave. That's right. Despise it. Abhor it. It's amateur hour. I consider it to be "Mets behavior." So I don't think people weren't doing it because Yale was losing. I think they weren't doing it because it's, you know, LAME!

I enjoyed seeing Sean Backman play for the Bulldogs. I called some of his games back in the day at Greenwich High.

Kudos to the Arena for a good show (not such great food, but so be it). Take marks away for the parking situation. I left my car about two blocks from the arena on the street because the lots were mostly full. Kudos to the city of Bridgeport for not ticketing me and every other soul who parked in the same area when our meters expired.

Did I mention I'm starting a talk show tomorrow? I did? OK then.

"Family Guy" just did a "Calvin and Hobbes" reference. Simple...awesome.

"Monsters and Aliens" gets twelve thumbs up - two each from the six people in my party that went today. But why oh why did it not show in 3D in Danbury, CT? Weak.

Do we really have two mall cop movies coming out? First it was the "Paul Blart" thing with Kevin James (I don't get his appeal - sorry, folks) and now "Observe and Report" with Seth Rogan (who I do get). Yet the simple question is this: why?

This is just funny, and so...wrong


Interesting take from JoePo on Curt Schilling re: the Hall of Fame. I don't think JoePo is making a case for Schilling per se.

My take? Schilling to me is borderline. That means "no." But the voters (and I really think it's time to have more people than just writers voting) will put him in simply for his quotes and f*&%k$#2 bloody sock.

Just an FYI (as a reminder). In the 2001 World Series, Schilling did the following:
Game 1 - 7 IP, 3H, 1 ER, 8 K's (this, boys and girls, is a great start)
Game 4 - 7 IP, 3H, 1 ER, 9 K's (another fine start and he leaves with the lead but Arizona LOSES thanks to Mssrs. Martinez and Jeter as the clock strikes midnight on 11/1/01)
Game 7 (OK, this is where my head explodes) - 7.1 IP, 6H, 2 ER, 9 K's. Ladies and gentlemen, the co-MVP of this here World Series was THREE OUTS AWAY FROM BEING THE LOSING PITCHER IN GAME SEVEN! He spit the bit by allowing a bomb to Alfonso Soriano in the eighth and would have certainly lost had Randy Johnson not come on bailed his ass out.

My point? Perception, people. Perception. If Mariano finishes the job in the ninth (oh, the nightmares) the space-time continuum might be different.

Gotta go. I have a show to do tomorrow. But you knew that already.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Announcing, "The Press Box"

Coming Monday, March 30th at 2:00...THE PRESS BOX...a one-hour (for now) sports talk show starring...ME! The show will be carried by the Lifestyle Talk Radio Network® daily from 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM Eastern.

Check your local listings, or listen live via the internet.

Let me say that this is not the official announcement, nor do I speak for either the Lifestyle Talk Radio Network® or the Business Talk Radio Network®. I did, however, send the following description of the show in today...
“The Press Box”, hosted by Rob Adams lets the sports fan be heard! Focusing on a wide variety of sports issues, The Press Box covers the topics of the day, the major sports news, and the minor things as well. High school sports, the minor leagues, and the lighter sides of sports are all be fair game.

“The Press Box” will feature great guests - the movers and shakers in the world of sports. We'll visit with legendary names from across the landscape, along with authors, media members, athletes and more.

The goal of “The Press Box” is for the fan to drive the show. Callers get their fair shake, instead of simply being discarded with the wave of a hand. “The Press Box” will be for the fan!
Much more to be said, and we will get to it. Let's spread the word and start promoting!

I went to the NCAA Hockey East Regionals today. More to say there as well.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

I Feel Their Pain

I've never worked for an outfit like the YES Network. WGCH and the other stops on my broadcast train have been much more simpler. Then again, I've worked primarily in radio and the very nature of radio is to be simpler in terms of our setup.

I'm watching the Yankees and Phillies play on YES right now, and they are having awful audio problems. The reason I feel a kinship here is due to the fact that I've experienced what they're dealing with.

TV by their very nature shows up hours earlier than radio guys do, since they have to deal with satellites, miles of cable, camera placement and test it all out. Radio shows up, plugs in, sets up, and is ready to go. I can get to a game with little or no time (so long as I can set up). I don't like doing that, but sometimes it can't be helped (you know, full time jobs and stuff). Most of the time, I'm there a minimum of an hour early, but often it's more.

As the guy who does the engineering for our broadcasts, I put all of the equipment in place and test it all out. With any luck, I then have time to visit with the coaches, players and even fans (yes, there's a large amount of schmoozing that goes into my job). Hopefully I even have a minute or two to review notes and get ready to go on the air. When all goes well, the music comes on, fades down and I begin to talk.

What I'm getting at is, even with all the preparation, testing, and time, things happen. These are the moments when, despite everything, the virtual "on air" light goes one and nothing goes on the air. Oh I'm talking, but nothing is transmitting. Or we've lost our cell phone signal. Or somebody has taken our phone line. Or a battery has gone dead. Or a piece of equipment has malfunctioned.

I think you get the idea.

The best laid plans...

Well that's what YES is going through today. It seemed like the minute Bob Lorenz and Ken Singleton described the first pitch, the audio went out. It went to static, then dead. Hideki Matsui homered and we saw the picture, but didn't hear the call. Then they fixed it, and it died again. Now they're calling the game with the sound quality of a hard phone line.

I feel their pain. I've experienced their pain.

On TV, you can get away with that. We all know the picture is the star. We don't have that luxury on radio.

In my case, as the engineer and lead broadcaster, I'm the one who also faces the music later on from the listeners, advertisers, sales people, and (duh duh duh duh - "Dragnet" theme) the bosses.

Want to cite an example? Just say "Ridgefield" to me and I'll know what you mean. They have the worst cell phone service and despite having a phone line that we could use, I couldn't get our equipment to work with it. So I called that game by holding the phone to my mouth. I would hand it off when I wanted an analyst to say something. It was not fun.

Just the nature of our business. And as I've explained, it happens at every level.

Trogdor!


Though not a great picture, this is Trogdor...the Bunnynator. He belongs to my nieces family and is (of course) based on this



Good stuff.

Don't Worry, She's Fine

You might have seen this already. A woman fainted on live TV yesterday and, to be honest, I ignored it at first. I just watched it and (especially since I know she's OK), I can't stop laughing.

I'm so sorry, Ms. Nikki Allen. Seriously, I am. I'm glad you're OK.

Again, I'm sorry. I must be an awful person.

What might be even funnier is the performance of Dan Rowe, the executive director of Panama City's Tourist Development Council, who not only botches a trivia question but stands there looking down as if this kind of thing happens all the time!

Monday, March 23, 2009

But the Food is Good!


When I met Jon from R-VA, USA in NYC a little over a week ago, we had no game plan. We figured we'd have lunch but that was about it.

True to form, we stood in Grand Central and chatted before we started to walk aimlessly. The beauty of that clueless stroll - straight across 42nd Street to 9th Avenue (towards the Port Authority Bus Terminal) led us to the pizza restaurant depicted above. It was terrific New York pizza - doughy, nice consistency and taste in the sauce and flat-out yummy!

Plus the guy behind the counter was overwhelmed and entertaining, so it was just all good.

On the way out the door, I picked up the menu. I had to scan it when I saw their marketing slogan:
If you are afraid to walk here, Don't Worry...WE DELIVER!
On this particular Saturday afternoon, I couldn't have felt safer, but I suppose the area around the bus terminal can be sort of dicey when it's dark.

Oh, to finish the day, we walked all the way up 9th Ave. and cut over to Columbus Circle, before watching kids play on a great playground in Central Park. Then we walked Central Park South and sat outside the big Apple Store/FAO Schwatz and talked some more. Then it was 5th Ave back to Grand Central.

You might be tempted to say, "boring." So be it...and bite me. For both of us, it was a good way to enjoy New York and catch up.

It was all good. And we weren't afraid to walk.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Friday Night at the Izod Center


It's no secret that my time with Sean (the one and only Son) is precious these days. I say this as I write from an empty house - and it has been so since yesterday. I don't mind being alone (and independent) but I hate it when Sean isn't around. The loneliness gets overwhelming.

Maybe that's a post for another time. It does, however, prove why Friday night was so priceless.

Sean is not the best sports spectator. He doesn't have that thing that I had at seven (and that was about the age that I can remember immersing myself in sports for good). He's not likely to sit and watch a game with me on TV (though he was great with the Super Bowl this past year until he went to sleep). Our previous trips to Yankee Stadium have left me frustrated; hoping I can at least make it to the seventh-inning stretch.

I know - all of you parents go through the same thing. I think my nieces and nephews were pretty good about it because I wasn't their parent.

So thanks to my bosses at the Business Talk Radio Network (via the YES Network), Sean and I were given two tickets to Friday night's Nets game at the Izod Center (nee Meadowlands Arena, Brendan Byrne Arena, Contentintal Airlines Arena) against the Miami Heat. Who else could I take but my buddy?

I was looking forward to seeing Dwayne Wade and Vince Carter, among others. Sean had no clue what he was going to see.

Our seats were amazing - 19th row, with the Heat bench facing us. Sean was mesmerized by the scene. He loved the pregame introductions (of course, the lights went off for a display when the Nets came on - everyone has to copy the Bulls of the Jordan years). The game was largely lost on him though. By the mid-point of the first quarter, the questions began:

- Is the game over?
- Why is everyone so excited? (A Nets player had just slammed one home)
- How many times are there? (quarters)

and, number one on the list?
- Can we get some popcorn/ice cream/something to drink/foam finger?

So being the good dad, I took him to get popcorn. Then came the ice cream at halftime - which meant missing half of the third quarter.

The good thing about the ice cream was that I could buy him a little plastic basketball bowl with a Nets logo. VoilĂ  ! Instant souvenir!

I didn't cave in on the foam finger, and I thought he was going to melt down when we didn't get a T-shirt thrown to us. I blame this guy...

Now I know what Sly Fox does with his free time.

Anyway, the game was overall a fun experience, and we did make it to the very end.

The Nets won 96-88. Carter just missed a triple-double and Wade had an "off" night with "only" 27 points. I enjoyed the game; Sean enjoyed the extra-curricular stuff. He liked the mascot, the dancers, the entertainment. The Nets get points for working hard to make the crowd feel comfortable. They really play it up with the kids (though Sean stood no chance of getting on the big screen due to the fact that I'm a jinx). He enjoyed walking around the arena after the game (everyone was allowed to linger due to a post-game concert by Yolanda Adams - no relation).

The rest of our pictures are here...including some of our beloved cat Fred.

I'll probably take him to the first Yankees-Cubs exhibition a week from Friday (!) but I must admit, it's not easy to be a sports-loving dad who almost never leaves his seat.

By the way, the Brooklyn thing with the Nets needs to happen, or the arena needs to be upgraded. There are just too many elements of the building that scream "1980's!"

A decent writeup of a the game is here, from Tom Canavan, who noted probably the most entertaining moment of the night:
Wade drew the biggest cheer of the game with 1:57 left in the third quarter when he one-handed an 85-footer off the backboard into the basket.
That was a wild scene, and very funny, as Carter and Wade laughed about it.

Traffic was very light as we left the arena, and I made the decision to take Route 3 east towards the Lincoln Tunnel. Figuring we had nowhere to be, I made a decision that pleased both of us - I drove us right through the tunnel into the heart of midtown Manhattan. Sean got to see Times Square at night, and that drive seemed to be the topper on his trip.

We got home at midnight, and he fell asleep in the car (thankfully). I heard him telling his mother about the day on Saturday. I guess that means the experience had an impact on him.

I Love Lists

I enjoy ranking things. They always create such controversies and conversations.

So this morning I'm watching this marathon of top 10 lists on the NFL Network. I saw the Top 10 Motivational Coaches (#1? Lombardi, natch), the Top 10 Super Bowl Individual Performances (Doug Williams in Super Bowl XIII was tops) and I'm finishing up the Top 10 Characters.

Number one? William "The Refrigerator" Perry.

HUH?

OK, for one season he was fun, but he wasn't that big a deal beyond that.

Incidentally, number two was Brett Favre. So take that for what it's worth.

I think you'd have to look at guys like Chad Johnson, TO, John Riggins, any one of a number of Raiders, Warren Sapp, John Randle and so on. Just my two cents.

Now they're going after the Top 10 most feared tacklers. It has to be LT, Jack Lambert, or my personal choice, Dick Butkus.

UPDATE - Lambert - 8th, LT - 3rd, Butkus - 1st. Yep.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Just Because

Sorry. This one got stuck in my head. Consider this a semi-Rule 55.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Might as Well Embrace It


There's nothing I can do about the old Yankee Stadium. Sadly, it's over. They've even begun to rip up the field. Of course, that's not fast enough for some.

By the way, Ben K at River Ave Blues says,
I don’t, however, blame the community and park activists for feeling slighted. Shea Stadium was recently turned into a parking lot in short order. The city could have made an effort to do the same with Yankee Stadium.
Um...BZZZZZZZ. This is a landmark, in my opinion. Take as much time as needed. This is Yankee Stadium!

And for the record, if this was Ebbets Field we were talking about, I'd still feel this way. Ebbets, the Polo Grounds, and Yankee Stadium are landmarks. And I'd say the same thing about Fenway Park.

Just so you don't think this is a Yankees thing.

Anyway, back to the title of the post. Tickets went on sale today for the new Stadium, and I'm proud to say I just bought four tickets in the bleachers for a grand total of $4.25! My cousin also bought some tickets (better seats), so we'll have a choice.

Now granted - this is an exhibition game - but it means a lot to me anyway. I wish they would open the Stadium on, you know, OPENING DAY, but that's just not how it is. Perhaps a little-known fact is that Citi Field will open with a St. John's/Georgetown basket...er...baseball game before the Mets play there.

I didn't get to take Sean to his final game in the old Stadium, and that has never sat well with me at all. I will, however, get to take him to his first game in the new building.

Like I said, I might as well embrace it.

Oh, and can somebody build me this, or at least let me have access to it?

On With Day Two

More March Madness today (don't I know it?).

I'm off to see the Nets and Heat tonight at the Brendan Byrne/Meadowlands Arena. What? They don't call it that anymore? Don't tell me they actually have corporate-sponsored arena names around these parts?

I'm Right On The Edge

Enjoy this video of Glenn Quagmire (from "Family Guy") as a "Rule 55" moment. Lord knows I have a Quagmire in my life these days - and I'll stop right there.

Quagmire Compilation 2 - Click here for the funniest movie of the week

Thursday, March 19, 2009

"From Opening Tip To 'One Shining Moment'"

Those were the words of Jim Nantz as Butler and LSU get underway. Bo Spencer of LSU scores the first five points.

Good seats still available in Greensboro.

LSU just jumped out to a 9-0 lead. Not good for me.

Make it 13-6, LSU. That's a little better. I obviously picked the Butler Bulldogs.

We get Nantz and Clark Kellogg to start things. I'm OK with that. At least it's not GUS (I GET REALLY EXCITED) JOHNSON!!!!!

Nice guy, but sheesh.

I should be working at my mom's, so I could have a good web feed and keep an ear other other games as well. Instead I'm stuck with my Verizon service, which has been less than stellar.

First game reaches the half. Butler is trailing LSU 35-29.

Oh,I forgot to say this when I made my final four picks, but to show my diversity, I will now pick the women's champion. Ready?

UConn.

Over Maryland.

You can thank me later for going out on that limb.

News just broke that UConn coach Jim Calhoun will not coach the Huskies in their opener this afternoon in Philadelphia. He was taken to the hospital and no further word exists. CBS is reporting it (and you're reading here) but as of now, Google reveals no further info.

I like Coach Calhoun. I hope he's OK.

I noticed Cal St-Northridge was making early noise against Memphis. Now the Matadors are up three on the Tigers. But come on - everyone relax - there are 10 minutes left.

Uh oh.

CBS is continuing to flesh out the Calhoun story and the buzz is that the UConn coach might not be back this weekend. Of course, that's assuming the Huskies win.

And so...adios to Butler (Rob=0-1) and Memphis survives (Rob=1-1).

Now we get Northern Iowa and Purdue. That means Kevin Harlan - another guy who is popular with the "Deadpsin"-type crowd. Oy.

UConn is of and running, down 2-0 Chattanooga. Craig Austrie, who once appeared on WGCH when he played Trinity Catholic, is a member of that Husky hoops squad.

Does anybody remember that we called Trinity Catholic's state title game against Northwest Catholic in 2002 on WGCH? Austrie and Dave McClure, who played at Duke, were both on that squad. The Crusaders lost 45-43. They wouldn't lose much after that with those two players.

These latter games aren't really thrilling me. Either that or I'm working too hard.

Only Because NOBODY Asked...

Louisville from the Midwest...Memphis from the West...North Carolina from the South...and Villanova from the East.

Those are my picks for the NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament. Oh, and Tony Savino asked. Thanks for that.

I'll take Louisville over Memphis, and NC over 'Nova. Louisville will win the National Championship.

Write it down. Not.

I'm like anybody else. Some years I'm on fire, and other years I stink. There's always a little extra pressure on us sports personalities because we supposedly know all. We get abused when non-sports folks win. Sandi won one year and it really didn't bother me. I was proud of her. Besides every once in a while, the blind squirrel finds the nut, no?

So my picks aren't very ground breaking but I tried to shift things a little with 'Nova. I'd love for Pitt to do it but they haven't been great in the tournament over the past few years, and the pressure on them is enormous. Plus they get in foul trouble easily.

I've set up a special spot in my living room so I can work and listen to the games. I can see the TV as well, so we're all set. It's one of the best days of the sports year, and the clear sign that spring is almost here.

I do miss the times when a few coworkers and I would go to a local watering hole and extend our lunch just a touch so we could watch some of the games. Sigh.

Enjoy the Madness.

Oh, and terrible news regarding Natasha Richardson. A fine actress. She seemed like a nice woman, mother, and wife. Stable and all that. A rarity these days. Sad.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Congratulations to Martin Brodeur


Marty the Magnificent became the NHL's winningest goalie last night, passing Patrick Roy's record of 551.

Many are calling him the greatest goalie ever, but I'm not as quick to do that, especially since I frankly don't feel qualified (Killer and Harold, among others...you're up!). Roy, Ken Dryden, Tony Esposito, Glenn Hall, Terry Sawchuk, Jacques Plante are all in my brain, along with Johnny Bower, Bill Durnan, Turk Broda, Tiny Thompson, and George Hainsworth, Ed Giacomin, Billy Smith, Bernie Parent, Grant Fuhr, and Gump Worsley.

Oh, and I'm throwing Mike Richter's name in, because I want to. He's not the greatest, but I think he deserves a mention, and he stood on his head in '94, outdueling who to get to the Cup Final? Marty Brodeur.

To be fair, and this is a lesson for all of you young bloggers, I got those names from this article, written by Kevin Dupont on MSNBC. Always cite your sources, kids!

Oh, and the US came from behind to beat Puerto Rico in the WBC last night. It frankly looked like a Marlins game at Dolphin Stadium - the seats were mostly empty. A good night for a couple of Mets, as Carlos Delgado homered, Carlos Beltran made a great catch in center, and David Wright had the game-winner.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Cancel That Missing Persons APB!

I had wondered what had happened to my longtime friend Charles (Chuck) Costello, who had once been a WGCH colleague of mine.

Fear...no...more! He's a Fordham guy, so this is the perfect thing for him to write about!

He's one of the good ones with a passionate heart and mind for sports - especially basketball. I'm glad to hear from him, and he told me he's become a loyal reader. Who would have thought it?

He has such low expectations of me!

It Was 20 Years Ago Today

Twenty years ago, while watching "The Quiet Man" on TV, my father had a heart attack and died at the age of 59.

I've stressed over the years that I don't let it bother me on St. Patrick's Day. I've done many other fine things on St. Patty's Day that, while I don't forget about the anniversary, I don't let it ruin the day.

So let this simply be a way of saying that I'm taking a moment to think of my dad today. Some days he is missed much more than others. For reasons other than his passing, today is one of those days. I could use his wisdom right about now.

I wonder sometimes what he would think of the current state of affairs. To be blunt - he'd be pissed. And worried. He would not like what is going on in the world, and in our little corner of it. He'd also be proud. Proud of his grandchildren. Overall, I think he'd also be proud of his own children, because we've survived a lot of bad stuff and done a lot of good stuff.

Maybe I'm being Pollyanna, but that's my belief and I'm going to stick with it.

He'd also be 79 and I wonder what kind of health he would be in. Indeed, who knows what our lives would be like. It doesn't take a genius to figure out that things would be very different.

Anywho, I just wanted to take a moment to recognize his passing 20 years later. Like everything else, it seems like it was yesterday...and it also seems like it was a lifetime ago.

In reality, it was a lifetime ago.

I Can't Get Into It

So something did go down yesterday and yes, it wasn't good. However I've been asked to not discuss things for now, so just take my word for it and hope for the best.

I will assume that request extends to el blogerino (and yeah, I know you're reading), so I will respect those wishes.

It's a scary time for me. Does that tell you enough?

Guess that's all. Happy St. Patty's Day.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Imus Has Stage II Prostate Cancer

Wow. Sometimes I thought nothing could bring the I-Man down. He was often like Keith Richards to me. He may beat it, but it's just another brick in the I-Man's wall.

Read here.
Radio host Don Imus announced on his radio show Monday that he is battling stage II prostate cancer.
I'll likely be on later with some stuff. It might not be good. Let's hope otherwise.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Another "WOW" Moment in Sports Broadcasting

Check out this article brought to us via the great STAA. Any time any radio listener gets frustrated with a broadcaster please remember this.

Thank you.

New Discoveries

I was going through the blogs over a month ago when I came across this seemingly run of the mill post from Deadspin. There I found the requisite Erin Andrews shot (not that there's anything wrong with that), links to other nonsense, and pithy commentary. Yet something caught my eye. It seems Deadspin Editor AJ Daulerio was getting ready to move to New York at that time, and he decided to post a video. For whatever reason, I clicked on it.

Suddenly I became mesmorized by the images, but more so by the song itself.

If you don't know, it's called "New York, I Love You But You're Bringing Me Down" by LCD Soundsystem. Further intrigued, I downloaded the album that the song is on, called Sound of Silver. Their Wikipedia page describes them as:
...a mix of dance music and punk, along with elements of disco and other styles.
Sounds of Silver has been lauded just about everywhere as one of the great albums of 2007. So I'll be giving it a full spin later today to hear it for myself.

Always happy to discover new things that might enrich and enlighten!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Adios K-Rock, Hello Now

And so that's that. Right around 4:54, Van Hagar's "Right Now" faded out, followed by roughly two minutes of a ticking sound (no doubt, counting down). At 4:56, following a thank you to K-Rock's listeners and an announcement that the music would continue at their website and Hi-Def station, a pre-produced montage began, starting with the sounds of old, great New York stations (I heard WABC, 99X, WPLJ, WMCA, and Z100). With each top of the minute, an announcer intoned the time left until "now." The rest of the time was spent threatening Z100 ("You've had almost thirty years" and stuff like that).

At 5:00, KRock was done and Now began, kicking off with "Boom Boom Pow" by Black Eyed Peas (not sure why - maybe somebody more "hip" can tell me).

By the time Flo Rida's "Right Round" came on, I was gone. Nothing against the song (borrowing some of the beat from "You Spin Me Right Round" by Dead or Alive, circa 1985) but I felt the format change was over and I could get on with my evening.

Like I said, that's that.

Off the Bench (or A Few Quick Random Thoughts)

So K-Rock (92.3 FM) is done later today. I had heard a few rumblings about it, and sure enough, it's happening. When Opie and Anthony were told their show was over, I knew the writing was on the wall.

Sorry to see O&A off terrestrial radio but K-Rock wasn't cutting it for me. Too much like the current state of "alternative music", mainstream and all over the place. So what takes it's place? I'm told a pop/Z100 type of station.

The change happens at 5:00 today. We'll see.

Looking for a good station that gives a wide variety of music? Try WXPN from the University of Pennsylvania. My niece and I listened to it while we drove around the Philly area a week or so ago. Oh, I have my complaints with it (too many repeats of certain songs) but it's better than a lot of stuff.

Then again, there's always WFUV. Incidentally, one of the great DJ's there Rita Houston, posted a fun story there, and I highly recommend that you read it.

WFUV might, in fact, have the better playlist selection over WXPN. But it's nice to have the option when in the Philly area.

UPDATE: Mucho thanks (or something like that ) to Jon...he of RVA...for turning my onto another stations - KEXP in Seattle (via the University of Washington). Holy moly, this one is really good. One last thing...how is it possible that a great college town like Richmond, VA isn't putting a solid station on our little list of great college radio outlets?

By the way, did you hear U2 have a new CD? Geez...Letterman, Good Morning America (at Fordham U), now a three-part radio series. Get on your boots, indeed.

I had actually thought I wouldn't have tickets in the new House (aka Yankee Stadium) in 2009 and I was OK with it. But thanks to the efforts of my cousin Kris, my friend Mick, and the Yankees themselves (I'll give an assist to friend and birthday girl Kelly), I'm back. The Bombers called yesterday and with Kris on my cell, we completed the transaction.

So I guess I'll see you at the ballpark. I don't know how many games I'll actually make though.

I finally watched the DVD the Yankees sent along about the new Stadium. Looks nice.

Want to see the Yankees Stadium that made us all fall in love with it? Go here.

Jon from R-VA, USA sent me a link to some Bruce Springsteen stuff that he found. Damn him! I have too much to do as it is!

Bored? Go play some hip beats on your keyboard here.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Randy Moller Might Be the Next Man-Crush

Gus Johnson remains the idol of all who enjoy over-excited play-by-play voices, but if hockey can gain any kind of stronghold, look out for Randy Moller - the radio voice of the Florida Panthers. Moller is a lattter-day Mike Lange, the longtime voice of the Pittsburgh Penguins who had become known for his cooky exclamations at big moments - most notably Penguins goals and game-winners.

Here is a collection of Lange's calls, via the WWL (that's the Worldwide Leader)


Now for Moller:


UPDATE: More Moller from Dan LeBatard


They both have their humorous moments (come on! Moller uses ANCHORMAN!) but I wonder if they also wear it out after a while. I'd have to hear a lot more to judge. Goodness knows I've been prone to a quip or two over the years. Largely harmless, so long as it doesn't take away from the call. You'd hate to hear a broadcaster who is so busy prepping his next big funny line that he blows the call. Not that we've ever heard that here in New York.

Oh and it could be worse. (Harold...turn away...don't press play)

That is a hockey's truly painful version of "The Giants Win the Pennant!"

Want more of Rick Jeanneret? OK, I guess (it means you get to hear "MAY DAY" again):


Harold may disown me for doing that.

That's enough for now. By the way, I have no idea when our next broadcast will be. Greenwich lost to Danbury in boys' basketball last night 67-62 and to South Windsor in ice hockey 4-1. So that's that.

I do, however, want to thank my WGCH mates for a wonderful season. Rob Crowley, Nick Fox, Sean Kilkelly and my partner of many years now, John Spang, did great work. No more so than last Saturday, when we went out with a call for the ages. We were as solid as we've ever been as the Cardinals beat Darien 3-2 to win the FCIAC Championship.

Thursday, March 05, 2009

U2 On Letterman

I was just not into the Irish lads putting out a new CD. In fact, I was just not impressed. The I got a copy of it, and it's not bad. Then they went and played Letterman.

And now they've gone and done a Top 10 list. Damn you, U2.


My question is - will this new CD (No Line on the Horizon) hold up? While their previous two albums impressed me for a stretch, they soon faded into the back of the CD shelves/iTunes library. In other words, I haven't listened to them in a while.

I'm still that person who loves War, Boy, and The Unforgettable Fire while liking only "Gloria" from October (though I should probably give that another spin). After that, it's all OK. I don't genuflect for The Joshua Tree, for instance, preferring the earlier work. But that's just me.

Also on my latest listening list is the most recent release by My Morning Jacket, Evil Urges. After two tracks, I was ready to burn it (and I don't mean to disc). Fortunately I didn't give up that easily. Sometimes I hear so much buzz about a band or an artist that I need to learn more (this is how I came into being a Radiohead fan). MMJ was pretty good in the same way as Kings of Leon (another recent discovery). These bands straddle that line of what's "alternative" these days, and that's what keeps troubling me. Maybe this concept of "Adult Alternative" had dumbed us down? So many of these acts are simply nothing more than pop bands that would have been dumped on Z100 in the 80's.

Unreal

ESPN is reporting that A-Rod needs surgery for his hip and will be gone for 10 weeks.

Alex, a little free advice for you. Have the surgery and disappear for 10 weeks. Then say nothing upon your return. Be great with kids, be a great teammate, hit balls to the moon, and say nothing to the media.

Amazing. Just when you think it can't get worse...

UPDATE: It gets worse! Well no surgery, says PeteAbe, but he's going to play with the cyst AND a torn hip labrum. It's going to be a looong year.

CSB Shuts Down

Nick Fox rang my cell phone last night as I was driving to Stamford to call the Greenwich-Trinity Catholic FCIAC semi-final on WGCH. It's not uncommon for Nick to call to see if I'm in the building yet, so I kind of assumed that's what he was calling about (or something like that).

Then he threw me a mammoth curveball - nose to toes.

CSB School of Broadcasting (known as the Connecticut School of Broadcasting when I attended it) had closed with virtually no notice. Students received a message telling them that the entire "franchise" (26 locations in 15 states). A message on the door of each locations read:
“We regret to inform you that CSB has shut down all operations until further notice. If you are a CSB student someone at Corporate will be in contact with you in the coming days.”
This news saddens me for multiple reasons. First - I am a proud alum. CSB was where I proved to myself that I could succeed in this business. It hooked me up with my first job - at old Majic 105 in Paterson (105.5 FM - now Y-105 in Brookfield). It helped me rebuild myself as a student following my father's death in 1989 and was the stepping stone to go on and finish both my Associates and Bachelor's degrees.

I had done some teaching at CSB in the past and was looking forward to doing more. In fact, I was supposed to start with them later this month (and we were talking about doing some cool things).

As I've moved along in the industry I've run into many more CSB grads - some of whom I still work with.

I feel for the current crop of students - like Sly - who now wonder what the heck is going on. The AP via the Hartford Courant says:
The family that started the school has told WTNH-TV it has begun the process to reopen the school so students can graduate.
I knew somehow the school would have to make good. Still more people are out of work.

I just don't know what to say anymore.

Some linkage for you:
Hartford Courant story
CSB Wikipedia Page
"Scott's Shots" by David Scott (from Boston Sports Media Watch) gives his take.
Fox 61 story.

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Great Prank

From College Humor via Awful Announcing.


Well played.

I'm laying low these days. Enjoy Greenwich and Trinity Catholic in the FCIAC boys' ice hockey semifinal tonight at 7:50 on WGCH and wgch.com.

Sunday, March 01, 2009

Paul Harvey (1918-2009)


(Chicago, 2006)

Folks, if you don't know your history of the legends of radio, you will today. We have lost one of the titanic giants of our medium with the passing of Paul Harvey.

His folksy broadcasting style brought us news of the day and stories told with perfect pronunciation and a sense of goodness. You got the sense he lived an amazing life with little or no scandal - just a simple, plain man. He told your "the rest of the story" in which he weaved a tale to take you around to a surprising conclusion. I, and millions like me, listened to his every word.

The tributes will pour in from all corners over the next day or so, and with good reason. He was among the best.

Radio Ink announces his passing here. CNN has more.