Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Living La Vida Ticket -- PART 2

[You can read Part 1 here.]

In Part 1, I began some rather diffuse musings on the relationship of the P1 to The Ticket.  My question was whether those who are not as devoted to the station have a point when they deride the fanatic devotion that many of us feel towards The Little One.  I asked how Confessors listened to the station and got a variety of responses, most of which sounded a fair amount like my own listening habits. 

Makes sense.  The ratings have been stratospheric for a long time, so obviously lots of people are listening, and since the ratings for the shows are tops up and down the broadcast day, they're obviously listening a lot

So -- are we excessively geeked over The Ticket?  Are we the radio equivalent of Star Wars enthusiasts (sorry, Ty, I love Star Wars, too) or people who confuse their video game experience with actual living?

I've lived in major metro areas on both coasts and the Midwest.   I have listened to sports radio for as long as it's been around.  Some pretty good stations, some interesting hosts.  When I married Mrs. Plainsman, we were living elsewhere, but her family is all here and I had no family where we were living.  It was inevitable that we would move to the Dallas area, and we did so in 2004.

I was looking forward to living in Dallas.  No, not because of the TV show.  I believed I would find a progressive modern city that had done what many metro areas had done with their downtowns.  I apologize to all DFW natives and other enthusiasts, but I was and remain disappointed.  (I wrote an article on my feelings about Dallas here.)  Since that article, we've had the debacle of the Super Bowl week.  Yeah, unusual ice and snow -- but the fact is that Dallas gets lots of ice storms compared with other cities because its temperature hovers around freezing more than elsewhere.   The city's response to this would have been appalling even if it hadn't occurred during the most anticipated sporting event in the country; its torpid reaction to the weather emergency during SB Week was symptomatic of a city that's governed by amateurs. 

Enough.  So I find myself in this overhyped city thinking I'll probably live out my days here, and not too happy about it.  (Other than my relationship with Mrs. Plainsman's family, which is delightful.)

But then one day, weaving down the expressway on my way to work poking at the scan function on my car radio, I cruise into one of The Ticket's in-and-out pockets of signal coverage and fortuitously punch in 1310 Amplitude Modulation and hear Those Oh-So-Gentle Musers trading quips about something or other.  I'm not sure if I picked up on whether it was supposed to be a sports-talk situation, but it was clearly some guys who were having a good time and not hollering into the mics or talking over one another.

I eventually figured out that they were on 104.1 Frequency Modulation too, and by adroitly switching back and forth I could usually cobble together a reasonably coherent listening experience.

And from that point on, my Dallas experience got a lot better.

So I think that if I'm honest with myself I have to concede that I do have an emotional attachment to The Ticket.  It's more than just passing entertainment for me.  As I mentioned in Part 1, running this site gives me a somewhat different relationship with the station -- it's more of a hobby than it would otherwise be -- but even in the pre-MTC days I always looked forward to my daily dose of humor, outrage, bad taste, the occasional nugget of information, fart drops, and almost no unpleasant news of the world.  During those hours, I probably am living La Vida Ticket.

But I don't feel geeky.  My admiration, while vast, is not unqualified.  That's what this site is about:  celebrating what's great about the station (most of it) and (I hope fairly) raising concerns where they appear.  The Little One cultivates a personal relationship with its audience, and, like any friendship, it has its rocky patches.  The P1 may stumble through them from time to time, but the friendship endures.

My conclusion:  Factoring out the hours I spend on this site, I think my relationship with Sportsradio 1310 The Ticket is just about perfect, and has not warped my personality to the point of obsession.

Factoring back in those hours  .  .  .  maybe, some.  (Can one be a little obsessive?)

So I'll leave you with this question:   Irrespective of when or for how long you listen, how do you actually feel about your relationship with The Ticket?  Not The Ticket itself -- I assume we all like it a lot -- but the extent to which it affects your life?  That's a pretty touch-feely question, but it has been on my mind for awhile.  Do you sometimes, like I do, feel like you're living The Ticket Life?


CA said...

Just commented on part 1 and then found that part 2 appeared during that time. I agree with your opinions of Dallas but to get to your subject, my "relationship" with the station is nonexistent if you must use that word. Imho, content aside you're most likely never going to develop some kind of friendship with any of these guys. There is no back and forth. I recall your post about who is going to Ticketstock and I remember several commenters, myself included, making similar points.

I don't feel geeky listening to one station for 7 hours a day. I think leaving it at just listening might be the cutoff. I can't see myself following them around to remotes like some groupie. The few I've been to haven't been worth it. I remember one place didn't even have The Ticket on their PA just some music, so I had to bring in my own walkman and listen to the show on headphones while watching the HL. How fun is that?

I love The Ticket. I think all the shows are funny and/or unique in their own way but I personally refuse to give any of these guys rock star status except for Gordo. I mean, if I ran into him at Kroger I'd shit my pants just for the satisfaction of knowing he'd humiliate me in some clever way on the air the next day. The rest? Meh. They're great at what they do but I'm not going to break out my knee pads to quote Dan. It'd be really cool if they were easily accessible and approachable but The Ticket has made them all larger than life.

One thing that bothers me is that they'll give someone like Gracie the one-legged Stars fan an entire segment which wasn't that great except for her rejection of Grubes (poor Grubes) but since she's a Stars fan and -more importantly- has one leg they must have her on. That's the whole bit right there. Meanwhile a faithful P1 caller will either get ignored, destroyed after barely getting a sentence in or get his ass hung up on now you idiot if he disagrees with either of the above. That's all a part of the fun, I know. It just seems like the good P1 is the only casualty day in and day out. I don't know who these people are that call in regularly but god bless them.

Here we are on the day of another Ticket event, GNO. Anybody going? As the song goes, it's only P1 wasteland. They run the show in Dallas, they've earned it, let them have their fun. They say these events are all about the listeners but I'm sure they enjoy the spotlight. What's not to like about the Ticket life?

dammitbobby said...

i am a dallas native and inherited the little ticket from my father so I have been listening since i was but a tiny lad, but only gaining real consciousness to what the ticket really was around 2002. I have been a die hard P1 since then and now find myself abroad, the Ticket's broadcast day for me is 12:30 pm-2 am. My relationship with the ticket as of right now definitly affects my life, whether it be staying up absurdly late for no reason other than to listen to e-news or skipping actual social human interaction to hear gay-not gay.

your P1 abroad

Erixanders said...

My "relationship" with the Ticket is very new(only been a P1 for ~1 and a half years), but has greatly my view on Dallas and the Dallas Sports Scene. My 2 older brothers got me listening to The Little One, and I would listen for my whole work day. Ever since I got a promotion at work, I have only been able to listen during lunch break and on my short 5 minute drive home. I get updates from my brothers of when to listen to a certain segment when I get home, and they keep me in the loop.

The only people I follow on Twitter are people that have to do with the ticket. I still get a very small dose of schtick to keep my sane during the day.

What I love most about the Ticket is that, to me, it doesn't feel like a Sports Station. It feels like a City of Dallas Station, that leans a little more on the Sports side.

To wrap up my horribly paced, all-over-the-place ramble: I like the Ticket.

charlie0712 said...

I have been a P1 since around 2000. Being in high school then I listened when I could but once in college I would listen non-stop. After I dropped out of college I got a job traveling 24/7 so I couldn't listen but was promoted to an office job but in Chattanooga, TN. I get woken up by Rich in the morning and listen until I hit the bar at 530.

My relationship to the Ticket is life saving. Without listening to the Ticket from my phone all day I'd go crazy sitting in my office wanting to beat my head against the wall every chance I get. It keeps me laughing and enjoying life.

I'm coming back to Texas tomorrow for a week and it will be nice to be able to listen on a radio and not in headphones as I'll be there for a week. The #2300 has been an interesting development as well. With it, this blog and the unticket, I am constantly reading and listening to everything I can get my hands on.

Anonymous said...

Actually, Plainsman, it was the city's "progressiveness" that helped to contribute to the poor response to the ice storms during the Super Bowl. See, it was the eco-obsessed progressives that made the move to use an alternative to salt; said alternative (mostly sand), while providing some traction, does not melt ice. However it also does not have as much *potentially* damaging after effects on the greenery, etc... Where downtown is concerned, you don't really have a grasp on the history of Dallas. And as someone who hasn't lived here for even 8 years, that's to be expected. Downtown was vibrant until the 80s. From that point it went down the tubes. Why? Bad relationships between city hall and business. Special interests drove the businesses, and so the jobs, and then the people away from downtown and into the suburbs. But it is making a comeback. It just takes time. I've no idea what part of Dallas you live in, but I can almost guarantee that you've not seen even half of what the city has to offer. So perhaps you're not as progressive (open minded) as you might believe yourself to be.

The Plainsman said...

By "progessive" I didn't mean "liberal do-gooder ideologues who can be counted on to screw things up about as often as conservative do-nothing ideologues, that is, approximately 100% of the time" -- I meant "forward-thinking urban planners who could look around and observe cities who had succeeded in revitalizing their downtowns and learn a little something." I apologize for any confusion.

It's hard for a metro area as big as Dallas not to be a major city, but somehow it has managed.

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cancer monkey said...

Completely off topic, but this year's Summer Bash song is by far the best one they've had in recent years and is maybe one of the best ever. If you haven't heard it (you soon will), it's Donnie Doo doing Baby Got Ba(sh)ck.

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The Plainsman said...

I thought this article would prompt more response. What this tells me is that your average P1 (although I'm not sure the Confessor population is entirely congruent with that) just plain enjoys the station and doesn't find the need to spend much time reflecting on its influence on his or her life.

Which, seems to me, is a pretty good definition of entertainment.

So I'll move on with some new topics here soon.

Jeremy said...

I listen when I can throughout the day, download the podcasts, check, and listen to It's Just Banter. All this fallse under the banner of just consuming free entertainment. I've checked out one roadshow when it was at a convenient time and place, but didn't stay for the whole show or anything (did shake hands with the Musers, and talked to them briefly, but realized I wasn't setting the world on fire with my HSOs, so I laid off). There's a possibility I'd go to Ticketstock to see the Timewasters, if it was also at a convenient time.

I don't know about going to Summer Bash and other "non-added-content" Ticket events, and I wouldn't go out of my way to attend roadshows. To do these things I feel like would be admitting to myself what a pathetic creep I am, which I'm not quite ready to do yet.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps the lack of interest is due in part to your bagging on the city where many of your readers were born and raised in?

Anonymous said...

Again, Plainsman, downtown IS making a comeback. It takes time. You seem to want things to be as you want them to be, immediately. If you don't think that Dallas is a major city, then you aren't rational. And the more I read this blog, the more I think that might be the case. Gussied up in purplish prose, a bit too often, but that's okay; technically sound, most always; but nevertheless, more and more the real Plainsman is coming to the fore--and he/she/it is revealing h/s/itself to be less than reasoned. Oh, that and a bit of a censor. I see that you are deleting poster's comments more and more. I read the first one you deleted on this thread. It wasn't inflammatory...even though the person misquoted the Lynyrd Skynyrd lyrics. I'm sure this comment will be deleted ASAP. But that's alright, it's your blog. I ask you to think about this: It's proabably not a good idea to move to a city (and no one put a gun to your head to do so), start a blog about a wholly LOCAL entity (the Ticket) that became the success that it is by connecting on a personal level with its consumers by talking about LOCAL sports, LOCAL personalities, LOCAL nightlife, and LOCAL history, admit that you've only lived in said city a handful of years (and thus listened to the station in question a handful of years), show an ignorance about the city in general, and then proceed to tell your readers (many of whom are most likely lifelong denizens and/or actually like the place--oh yes, there are such animals... see Bob and Dan, many of the transplants, etc.) "hey, love the station, but *your* city is a joke." Sorry, Plainsman, it's poor form.

The Plainsman said...

Last two Anonomi: You may be right. I will say only this in my poor defense: In my orignal post, the theme was that it was the Ticket hosts who were bagging on the city, speculating that visitors would find it a drag. I agreed with them. Second, the comments to that post generally agreed with me.

Cities can be big and I suppose that makes them "major." But it doesn't automatically infuse them with the romance that truly great cities possess.

Here's one more Humvee for you (= HMV = Hot Municipal Viewpoints): When Dallas rejected the strong-mayor initiative in 2005, it delayed any genuine revival in the city for an indeterminate period.

The Plainsman said...

One more thing re deleting comments:

I haven't deleted any comments in weeks if not months until the two above. The first was directed at me and essentially told me to get out of town ("go back where you came from"). The second called the first guy a name or two (i.e., appeared to support Your Plainsman).

Both gonzo, although I thought about it for a day or two.

I don't take comments down for disagreeing with me, no matter how critical or neglectful of what I've actually written. (The last Anon above, while sharp-toned, was rather well-written.) But I'll let other sites host personal nastiness.

In general, the removal of comments is not intended to stifle disagreement. No one who has read this site for very long could doubt that my skin is reasonably thick. (I believe the first instance above is the first one I've ever removed that was directed my way.) It's intended to discourage the intemperate tone and keep the forum on-topic.

In general, it seems to have worked.

As always, thank you all for shopping at My Ticket Confession.