Monday, April 16, 2012

Cheap Monday Morning Quick Hits

(1) I tuned in this morning expecting to punch out quickly when faced with the prospect of another Gordon lust-fest over Mike Doocy.  But it ain't happening, and I haven't punched out.  What a pleasure listening to more-or-less mature professional broadcasting without the show coming to a screeching halt with a dozen Doocy-baitings per segment.  I can take and even enjoy most of Gordon's excesses, but this is one I can't. Sorry to obsess over this, and I promise I'll drop it until the next time.


(2) Liked that little Bobby Vinton imitation Gordon tossed out there.
  
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Again, folks, Sorry the posts have been few and far between lately. I've been dealing with a long-term personal issue (family member's health, thanks for your good wishes) that is taking pretty much all of my discretionary writing time. I'll try to at least post brief items like this one to freshen up the comment thread from time to time.

As usual, please treat all threads as open and be fearless in changing the subject if the spirit moves you.


38 comments:

T4 In Rockwall said...

@ Plainsman, no need to apologize. Family and health always take over priority #1. Best of wishes.

I did notice that if Gordo did take a jab @ Doocy, Georgio was quick to jump on Doocy as well. It almost seemed like it was 2 against 1 at times. But Doocy is a good friend of the Ticket that he seems to understands when those guys are just being themselves. Usually Georgio doesn't side with Gordo so quick, but it might have been because Craig was not on and the chemistry was thrown off.

BootRallyAnotherFifthOfSoCo said...

I echo T4's sentiments and well-wishes, Plainsman.

birq said...

I have to agree that today's Dunham and Doocy was probably the least land-mined broadcast they've done. I don't expect that form to hold for the rest of the week.

And, *off mic* stay hard, Plainsman.

The Plainsman said...

Thanks to all.

I also noticed that Doocy bit back a couple of times, which he usually doesn't do. Good.

Anonymous said...

Plainsman, I have to disagree with you: Doocy bites back at every turn. In fact, he pulls "a Gordon" on Gordon more often than no-i.e., he turns what Gordon says back onto Gordon. Doocy is the only person I've ever heard on the station that has done such a thing. Why others (especially George) haven't done this has always baffled me. Gordon is a smart guy, but the high school, bully, and nearly almost always fallacious debate tactics that he uses against others are very easily combated against. Good on Doocy.

Anonymous said...

Furthermore: I've noticed that, thus far, Gordon's wailing on Doocy has been much less frequent. If you compare this small sample size with, say, the "Gordie and The Dooc Show" during the Christmas dry dock, the jabs and prods and assaults are noticeably diminished. I can't help but to think that Doocy's handling of Gordon has, over time, made Gordon a bit more cautious. After all, people like Gordon do not like to be bested. Hence they almost always pick on those they think or know will not fight back.

The Plainsman said...

Doocy's spine-stiffening with Gordon is a fairly recent development. In the recent past, he has been pretty docile with all the baiting. I agree with those who say the new attitude makes for a better show all the way around. The last two days have been the best Deuce plus-ones I've heard in awhile.

Anonymous said...

I think it's just the difference between subbing for one or two shows and subbing for a whole week. If they all put the pedal to the metal on Monday, they might be out of stuff by Wednesday with two days to go.

Anonymous said...

Wow... that Gordo's corner... just wow.

The Plainsman said...

Umm . . . could you put a little finer point on that for us, Anonymous?

Chris Chris said...

I like Doocy and especially enjoyed the Skrillex electronic clothing store bit from this morning (even though it did go on too long). Can't stand it when Doocy sings and Gordo and George think it's just awesome to listen to on air. It's just... annoying. Stay Hard Doocy!

Anonymous said...

This is a continuation from the thread on the last posting...

The station is fast approaching its 20th year on air. In its nearly 20 years, there has only been
one major sea change: Greggo's firing. That's it. Pretty amazing. 20 years at one place, doing one thing in a field as transient as radio is a rarity. I have to think that there is at least one if not two hosts that are looking to the 20 year milestone as a possible turning point; a time for change. Rhyner? While he seems to be an obvious candidate, I don't think so. Here's the rub with people in positions like the guys at The Ticket (including peripherals). Most of them, whether they admit it or not (even to themselves) enjoy their local celebrity status. They get into sporting events and concerts in either primo or press sections. And they get chicks they might not get otherwise. That's the truth. Nothing wrong in that, at all. This applies to Rhyner. While, his legacy has been solidified with the founding of the station, his subsequent work, and his days at KZEW, Rhyner isn't going anywhere; he bleeds this stuff. Yes, his local and in some circles, national, legacy is solidified, he does not want to give up the local celebrity status (again, whether he wants to admit it to himself or not). Rhyner is staying put.

Corby, Donovan, Dan, and Gordon: Staying put. The first three are obvious: they love what they do and their lifestyles. They could remain where they are for the rest of their lives and be happy clams. Gordon is the same. Gordon is a talent. But Gordon isn't as much as a talent as I think many of you think he is. "Grace" yourself to a local comedy club on a Saturday night and I think you'll say to yourself "Wow! That guy has a brilliant outlook on our current social situation." And here is where I think you'll encounter the agile, yet pretty generic expression of said outlook of our dear Gordon. His brand of comedy and insight works "here." It doesn't work elsewhere. C'mon, his celebrity interviews are a riff of an SNL Chris Farley sketch. Just like so many other (especially early) characters were based on the early Man Show and the likes. Look, I love Gordo. But I know what he is and his limitations.

Anonymous said...

Junes, Norm, Georgie, and Bob:

Norm will stop broadcasting for paying stationS when whatever said stationS will no longer pay him for what he thinks he's worth. Period. And even then, he might do his own pod or whatever cast.

Bob will be Razor's successor. Period. Bank on it. Razor is about to go CBC. Good for Razor. Good for Bob. Bob, if afforded the opportunity, will keep his Ticket gig, but make no mistake, hockey is his true love.

Junes: If he could secure a buy out, he'd do it in a heartbeat. He enjoys what he's doing. But Junes has other things to accomplish in life. He neither needs local yokel celebrity nor copious bucks. He is prime for a 20 year "It's been nice."

George: Now you talk about a man in transition? From the things that have come out of his pie hole these last few months, one might think he's going to be a preacher, a counselor, or a councilman. Honestly, I think George is a pretty durn torn guy. I don't think he knows where the H he's going. Which, of course makes him prime for going off the range.

Now onto the recent changes:

Grubes: I love him. I love his body of work. I, unfortunately, think he didn't think thoroughly through the correlation between his lifestyle, his status, his feeling of acceptance, and his former job. I have a *feeling* that within the next 4 months (especially once the "welcome back, let's do it like 'old times' parties die off) he might wish he'd taken the part time student route. I still don't understand why he needed to go fulltime, in Denton (?). I can understand if he was accepted to an out of state or outside of the Metroplex school. Doesn't make sense...

As far as Danny goes: Yeah, the man embraces and works his local celebrity more than anyone at the Ticket since Greggo... but he earns it. He's a not only a Good MF'er, he's a Bad MF'er. Let the man do his thang.

OUT.

The Plainsman said...

A hearty double-shot from Anonymous! Nice work, some provocative points. Let's riff on this for a bit.

I will say that Anon may be slightly behind the curve on Mike R. I am almost certain that he signed a new deal late last year or early this year. It wasn't announced but all signs point to it.

One thing to consider is what guys with itchy feet are really going to do. Let's just take one guy, Craig Miller. I think your view of him is entirely credible. But let's say he has a hankerin' to wander. What exactly is he going to do? These guys are all making major dollars (if the major hosts aren't each making a half-million plus, they should fire their agents immediately), and the only other job that is going to do the same is a similar job at another station or network. Craig may have cycling or some other talent or passion, but that is not going to translate into a living. How often do you hear of a major local celebrity giving that up to teach school or pursue an artistic vision or the like? Maybe the hosts have squirreled enough away to retire in their mid-forties, but even that is doubtful.

Thus, to think that anyone is going to leave pretty much requires us to think that they'd be looking at moving to a competitor. A competitor with the money and the competitive zeal to pay these guys what they're worth and put some spine into promotion, unlike Cumulus. Unlike some, I do not think it is insane to think that The Musers could migrate to a new station. I think it is quite unlikely, but conceptually not at all beyond imagining.

I do think it is very unrealistic to think that any of them is going to give up sports/guy-talk broadcasting.

I will say this, Anon -- your post has given me the courage to write a blast I've been reluctant to write for a long time. There's a tease for you.

Shaggy said...

Number 1: Rhyner is dead.

B: I would challenge the notion that hockey is Bob's true love. I'm pretty sure that his dream job would involve football way before hockey.

Grubes said...

Anon,

If you don't think I've spent at least the last year thinking about this decision and all its possible consequences, you're silly. In an ideal world, of course I'd rather stay at the Ticket and play drops until my hands fell off. But despite the awesomeness of the job, it's not a career no matter how hard I tried to make it one. And being a career board-op without a degree just doesn't lead to many opportunities to move up, or even expand current responsibilities. I was stuck, basically.

I considered the part-time college thing, and it just doesn't work with my schedule. I'm at the station by 11am most days, and there til at least 7pm. So...I could take 8am and 9am classes MWF and an 8am and maybe a 9:30am class TuTh. No possiblity of night classes, either. Not incredibly flexible. And I tried the online thing with University of Phoenix a few years ago, and I just couldn't make that work. Too impersonal and just not a good way to learn anything.

June 3 would have been my tenth anniversary with the station. In that time I have gotten to do so many fun things and meet so many awesome people, I could probably write a book. I'm fully aware that the majority of that goes away in a few months once the aftershocks of my departure totally end. If no one knows who the hell the I am after that, I'll manage to survive. I've gotten more than I could ever dream out of the "local celebrity" lifestyle.

I chose UNT because I love Denton. Along with that, all of my friends who have gone there, and there's a lot of them, have nothing but great things to say about UNT. I plan on going for a business degree, but that may change. Regardless, I know that I want to LEARN and try to better myself. Especially the last few years, my focus on life has become way too narrow. All I worried about was the Ticket, baseball, Pepper Theft, and hanging out (drinking) with friends. Maybe I'm wrong, but I think I can be more than that. Seeing all the things my parents have done is intimidating at times, but it's a great blueprint for how I want to live the rest of my life. If I can achieve even a small percentage of what they've accomplished, I'd be damn proud. There's more to life than the Ticket, and I want to experience as much of that part as possible now that I'm moving on. I'm 26, so I hopefully have another 75ish years to live. The Ticket will have taken up a tenth of that time, but what a wonderful time it was.

And I'll say it again...the decision to leave the Ticket and go back to college was mine, and mine alone. Maybe I'll regret it, but I doubt it. I'd hit the glass ceiling at the Ticket, and I have just enough inner drive to not be happy with the status quo.

Hopefully that explains my decision a little better. I'm not bitter in any way, though I am disappointed with the way some things were, especially the disaster that was/is the move to Victory. But in the grand scheme of things, it's just a blip on the radar. My experience at the Ticket was the best time of my life, and hopefully I made some small dent in the history of it.

Love,
Shoopy

birq said...

You go, Grubes. I don't think you'll regret a thing about this decision in the long run. I'm sure you'll question your decision more than once when you're up at 3 working on a paper or studying for a stupid final in a class with 200 people 7 years younger than you, but long term, you'll thank yourself.

The Plainsman said...

Sensational blast, Michael. Surely the definitive account of your thinking, which a lot of people were interested in and maybe some of it didn't come across in the wailing and gnashing of teeth that was your farewell tour. Never a doubt in my mind that full-time college was the only way to go if you were going to move on at all.

In any event, I think it is at least clear by this point that your merry bleedthrough chortle will live on forever at The Little One, as it is a drop currently in heavy rotation.

I was interested in the remark about the move to Victory. While we were all blasting Cumulus, the thought lingered that maybe the issues were unavoidable in a move of that sort. I didn't think they were, but surely the move was technically complex. I was glad to see that our blasting was justified. The apparent loss of a great deal of recorded material alone is criminal -- somebody's head should have rolled.

Thanks again for checking in and keeping the Nation posted.

Anonymous said...

Shoopy, you're the best. Your comments ARE the reason we all love you so damn much! I echo Plainsman and others when I say "thank you" for all your work and for being a great man. I think I'm safe in speaking for the rest of the Confessor Nation when I ask you to please check in here from time to time.

Anonymous said...

Buy The Ticket Grubes

Grubes said...

I would love so much to buy the station and let everybody earn the money they deserve while working with the best equipment available. It's a shame such an amazing and unique station is run with a cookie cutter, anti-spending, "make the quarter/month's budget" mentality by those geniuses in Atlanta. I'm convinced the station could be even more successful if treated properly. But, alas...

T4 In Rockwall said...

Thanks for clafifying, Grubes, about the move and lack of material coming with you having not as much to do with you leaving as it would seem. In the P1's eyes (at least in mine) I would have thought it wouldv'e played a bigger role, seeing how that was your lively hood and in effect, kept you from doing your job properly. As Anonymous implied, do check in from time to time. We like hearing from you.

Grubes said...

I will allow that the move probably helped "push" me a little bit...But only in terms of leaving in time for the summer semester rather than the fall semester. Like I said, my leaving was inevitable. The timetable just got pushed up by a few months. :)

Anonymous said...

Good luck Grubes. I haven't seen it talked about here but in my mind a transition to a "yuck monkey" co-host role would've made a lot of sense. Maybe that wasn't possible for a variety of reasons not visible to us. My genius idea, that I thought of after you announced you were leaving, was to have Donnie move to co-host with Norm (and stay as co-host after Norm leaves) and have you take over for him. I don't think Donnie fits very well with BaD.

Grubes said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Grubes said...

I think a yuk monkey role would have been absolutely awesome if that opportunity arose, but realistically I don't feel I speak well enough to do that or am clever enough to do the kind of bits yuk moneys do. I feel like I become decent at throwing in a one liner from time to time, but I tended to stammer and stumble over words beyond that.

I considered seeking producer roles when they came up, but I just couldn't reconcile leaving the board for a minimal pay raise and a supposedly better role. If I was going to be part of a show, the best role for me by far was board-op. Playing drops for BaD Radio and the Hardline was perfect for my skill set, mentality, sense of humor, etc.

That's why the idea of management tended to float around in my head. As a P1, I know how I'd like things to be, and I feel like I got along with everybody in all departments well enough that I could be pretty good at that.

But in the end, I'd pretty much maxed out what I could really do at the station without a degree. Hurts to leave, and I shed many a tear in the weeks leading up to my departure, but I'm excited to see what the future holds...Even if I'm not famous anymore! Haha.

Anonymous said...

Grubes: Now that you're no longer a Cumulus employee, would you mind telling us what you would do to make the station better? Not just on the technical and management end of things, but also the tweaking of shows. I think it would be interesting to hear a true insider's perspective. Obviously you aren't/wouldn't throw anyone under the bus--and that's now what I'm trying to get you to do!--but if you do have any suggestions/ideas I think we'd all love to hear them. At least as much as you feel comfortable divulging. Oh, and NO I have absolutely zero affiliation with the station, Cumulus, or anything whatsoever to do with the radio or media biz. Just a curious P1 and a fan of the Shoopster.

Anonymous said...

@Shoopy

I'm the Anon you (partly) addressed in your first comment. Thanks for setting me straight. Of course I take you at your word, and I wish you nothing but the best, man. You seem to be more mature than your years and many of your peers. But I must also say that while it might not pertain to you, what I said about giving up celebrity and its aftermath is a really tough thing for most people in that position. A thing that many never quite get over. Like I said, thanks for setting me straight and good luck to you.

@Plainsman

I'm hip to Rhyner's contract status. If he wanted to leave he would merely break the contract and quit. But as I said, he doesn't and he won't.

George and Craig, from all indications, have earned a lot of money and have taken care of it. Craig has no children and from what I've heard a wife who is successful in her own right. Who is to say he couldn't retire right now and be fine? I'm sure these guys have invested wisely, etc.. Furthermore, who is to say there isn't something else out there Craig wants to do career wise? With celebrity and success comes career opportunities that normally wouldn't have been afforded. George, as I wrote, might make a career/life change that is based on a calling of sorts. If that's the case, then financial gains are thrown out the window. He could most likely do this, because he's most likely taken care of his money/makes his money work for him. The one thing with George is that he has another college bound kid, and that means $$$$.

The upshot is, sans Bob (who has went on record to say that his dream job as a kid was doing play by play for an NHL team. To those who say "oh he'd rather do football, etc.": he is already the #1 color sub for an NHL team--he will take that slot not if, but when Razor leaves for the CBC...Razor leaving IS going to happen), the rest of the hosts that I claim are ripe for change are guys who would make a career/lifestyle change. They would not jump ship to a competitor. If they're happy with their profession, then why would they want to jump ship in the first place? Okay, they get money whipped. Cumulus and the new digs suck. Fine. I think these guys know that as crappy as Cumulus is, the competitors have it every bit as bad if not worse. At least at The Ticket, they're working with their buddies, with people they truly love and respect.

Grubes said...

Really, if I had my way, I would just let the shows police themselves. I know that's an awful way to go about being program director of a station, but seriously...The "newest" show on the station is Norm and he's been doing it since 2000. Every show has been #1 basically for as long as I can remember.

It's silly to micromanage how many freaking times Norm does a Twitter segment in a week, or when a certain bit like porn birthdays is "played out". There's enough internet savvy P1's to let us...er, them, know when a bit is played out.

The other way to know something is played out? When the guys on the show stop laughing at it. Working at the Ticket really sharpens your view on how funny things are because there's such an insane number of funny and creative people working during the week and on weekends. Most guys have a pretty good barometer on when to cut bait on a bit. No need to intervene.

So while there technically wouldn't be a whole lot I'd do on the programming side other than leave the shows alone, I would spend more of my time on trying to make the work environment as positive as possible. Everyone should be treated like they matter...just because you're a board-op or intern doesn't mean you're less of a human or matter less to the station. Unfortunately, there tends to be such a classification of people by their jobs that it can wear on the self esteem for those that aren't in a more prominent position. It's tough as hell to move up at the station because jobs hardly ever come open. People do what they can to stick around as long as possible, so why treat them poorly in addition to that?

The Ticket is a fast-paced station. Everything is live, and no matter how well something is (or isn't) planned, nothing is guaranteed to go perfectly. Whoever makes a mistake is going to feel bad already. What's wrong with just pulling someone aside and discussing what happened in an even tone? Knowing that a rip session is on the way makes you even more likely to make a mistake and that much slower on the trigger. Just human nature. I'd rather someone make a mistake in the name of entertainment than hold back and create "bleh" radio. That can be found elsewhere.

I know that's a very Utopian way of viewing things, but as someone who was lucky enough to go from outsider to insider and now back to outsider, I think my ideas would essentially maximize productivity and by extension, ratings.

I think.

duckandcover said...

I think the Anon at 3:46 hit upon an interesting idea. Why not pair up Donnie with Norm? I think Norm could use the help. Besides, Donnie has a lot to say, and so do Dan and Bob. That makes for one too many voices. Think about it, Donnie and Norm already work well together on the Cowboys Postgame Show. I think the move would make sense.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for answering my question Grubes. Maybe one day down the road you will be running The Littlest of Ones. Fingers crossed!

Anonymous said...

Just thinking while hearing all the "cumulus" mgmt talk lately...
Is there any way in the world the ticket would have been successful, let alone be what it is today, if it was managed in the early days the way it is now..
Why cant management see this? It appears obvious that morale and creativity on the station suffer the more the station is micro-managed

T4 In Rockwall said...

No need to mention this, but it would be a major hit if, and apparently when, Bob leaves to do play by play. Maybe the plan is for Donnie to step into the role Dan has and Dan step into Bob's shoes? I can't see Dan taking the lead role though. That's not how he rolls and the team would suffer for it. I've posted before that Dan used to be my favorite personality back in the day because of his spot on humor, but that can't carry a show. I would think someone like Cerois (spelling?) might step in and get a shot to fill his shoes.

T4 In Rockwall said...

BTW Plainsman, thanks for letting us have our opinions on this forum. It really has a feel where we can all speak freely (even though there are way to many anonymous posters out there) and not feel like some immature person will belittle your comment.

ap said...

Bob and Ralph discussed the possibility of Sturm leaving for greener NHL pastures a while ago - it's a very insightful look into his thought process, and relevant to the discussion above:

http://soundcloud.com/theunticket/bob-sturm-gets-strangis

P1Rick said...

That is easy to answer: because idiots don't know they are idiots. Truly stupid people know their limitations, but the Dickeys and Blankenships of the world, who have just enough talent and smarts to kinda make it, start thinking they are freakin geniuses when they get successful and believe it is all due ti their own particular modus operandi. They do not respect, or properly value/compensate, the Grubes, Dannys, and other key components of their operations. As a result, they actually hurt themselves in the long run. Sux to be them.

ap said...

Since the Anon at 3:52AM EST touched on it, I thought I'd throw out a question here:

How would P1's react if Junior was swapped out for Doocy?

Gordo and Doocy alone can grind on people (see http://www.theunticket.com/gordy-and-the-dooceman-volume-1/ and http://www.theunticket.com/gordy-and-the-dooceman-volume-2/), but George, Doocy and Gordo seems to work pretty well in my ears. Doocy has developed a repertoire of defensive tactics to absorb, deflect and redirect jabs that come his way, and seems to be willing to participate in most bits. I don't know how much airtime he gets at Fox-4, but it seems like he might have enough idle cycles to do a radio gig as well.

Thoughts?

Anonymous said...

ap, I can see it, for sure. I also can see Donnie becoming Norm's co-host. From what Grubes has said and in some ways implied, I have to think that the station's work environment has become rather poisonous. So perhaps there are some hosts thinking about a change.