Friday, March 29, 2013

A Nice Quiet Ticket Friday Night at Home with Mrs. Plainsman

It was a very interesting Ticket day, I thought. 

Mrs. P is recovering from some surgery (she’s fine, thanks for asking) and we’re watching some March Mildness (although this Kansas-Michigan game is concluding in an interesting way).  I’m in the old rocker and thought I’d give you  a number of items to chew on.


A commenter to the last post chided me for not having “sources” that would have instantly alerted me to Alexis’s departure.  I was going to respond that when one has no sources at all, my ignorance might be excused.

And later that day, I heard from someone.

I never know how to evaluate the stuff that (quite rarely and unexpectedly) comes my way.  I kinda consider the content, figure out it makes sense in the context of other stuff we know or think we know.  I decided this communicant probably had good information.  He (?) was someone who has been listening to The Ticket for a long time, and also exhibited some inside knowledge.  And in this case, his stuff was not incendiary, no apparent axes to grind. 

Paring it down s/he said:  The Campout was a Muser-only thing for several years before the whole station went.   The Musers decided to invite the whole station and make it a Ticket event.  It was never popular with some of the hosts, but they soldiered through.   After last year’s campout, only three of the nine on-air hosts were interested in doing it this year.  Thus, no more Campout, at least not this year and maybe never.

S/he also reported that the end of the Compound had nothing to do with Greggo’s departure.  S/he did not identify any specific reason the Compound was shelved, but did suggest that the talent sometimes feels that some items get stale and resist improvement.

Thanks to the Source – tried to think of a funny name for this correspondent, but nothing comes to mind.

I will say, however, that in general this tends to support my fairly unremarkable thought that there is some extremely interesting stuff that goes on behind the scenes.  Not all the hosts are on board with all of the stuff all the time.  This isn’t a shocking conclusion, but it’s the kind of stuff that the P1 would love to know about.  But, just as people beyond your employer don’t know the politics at your workplace, I don’t reckon we’ll ever get the story behind, for example, the demise of The Great Game.  There were some ill feelings after the last one, as I recall, centering on Mike Bacsik’s team-switching.  (Am I remembering correctly that that was the last one?)  You know, it’s probably just as well we don’t know.
 Trademarking Fun Ticket Phrases and Names

Confessors!  How unseemly!  You should receive your gratification entirely from the adoption of your descriptors by Confessors and others.  (I ran into a guy the other day who told me that he was the author of the “Yuck Monkey” designation on The Ticket.  I actually believed him.)

 How Mike is Sounding

Faithful Confessor ausgang left a comment to the last post reporting that he thought he detected sadness in Mike’s voice, that he seemed a little depressed.  Seemed to start 3-4- months ago.  (ausgang stated that he had no knowledge of any issues in Mike’s life.)

Well.   ausgang, I was startled by your comment because I noticed something in his voice at about the same time.  I thought about writing about it, but decided I may have been hearing things, and, truth to tell, I only hear it once in awhile.  (And not at all today, see below.)

But I had a different thought.  I didn’t feel that what I heard reflected any attitudinal issues.

What I thought was that for the first time, I thought I heard age creeping into those incredible pipes.    As I say, I don’t hear it often, but just once in awhile, I’ll hear a little crack, or a little breathiness, that I don’t recall hearing before.  The man is what, 62?  I mean, jeez, he comes by it honestly, and he’s not a young 62.   And he’s a regular vocal performer with his bands, singing out of his range (my opinion).  Not easy, and maybe what I’m hearing is just a little vocal weariness from a recent performance. 

But yeah, ausgang, I noticed something, too.

Mike and Mark

I only heard bits and pieces of The Hardline today, but what I heard sounded pretty good.  Mike was fully engaged, sounded great, and there was some sports talk on both their parts that indicated either preparation, or just plain sportsy knowledge.  I think most of us would like to hear more of this Mike with Corby and Danny, not just when sports is on the table, but in segments across the board. 

I wish I had heard more of their talk about the genesis of The Ticket, specifically Mark’s hiring by Mike.

Intra-Show Sniping

(1)  Corby won the E-Brake this morning for his show stop-down with a bad pun (that is, a pretty good pun).   George took the opportunity to take on The Hardline, who had been sniping at The Musers for not selecting enough of THL gaffes for the Friday contest.   George made some rather cutting comments about The Hardline, and concluded by recalling Corby’s suggestion that THL should do an internal blooper competition of its own.  George rather pointedly invited THL to do exactly that.   (I think that THL has won the last three E-Brakes.)

Of course, there is frequently some jabbing between the shows and it’s usually pretty-obviously good-natured.   George’s remarks did not have that flavor.  Anyone else thing George was just the tiniest bit hot under the collar?
(2)  I believe this one took place when Jake was doing E-News.  He made reference to a former Ticket guy, I believe it was Psycho Dave, who had stated somewhere along the line that he quit The Ticket because of Bob Sturm, although it could have BaD generally.  Mark said that he had left The Ticket way back when because of some friction with the cadre of BaD interns.  And there was talk directed generally against BaD interns (this may have been a reference to times past, hard to tell).   I forget who said that Bob was also amazed when learning that his management style did not get good reviews from his minions, but Mike jumped in at the end to support this piling on Bob.

(Attention UnTicket – that would be a nice clip to hear again.)

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As I said – an interesting Ticket day.
And now, I'm going to sit back and watch Perry Mason on Channel 24. 

Twitter: @Plainsman1310



Thursday, March 28, 2013

MTC Wishes Alexis Smith All Success . . .

.  .  .  in her new role at KIRO Channel 7 (that's on the teevee) in Seattle.  Did not hear Dan read the memo on WTDS today, but got this from Alexis's recent tweets.  Hoping I have read them correctly.

  1. Adam Bomb @adambombshow4h
  2. Congrats to my former morning show cohost grabbin a huge gig @ KIRO TV in Seattle! You'll rock it out there. Pack an umbrella
  1. Thanks Bomber!!:) I might borrow a flannel or 2 from you before I go!

Best to you, Madam.   I will never forget your stunning promotional appearance at that grilling store in Frisco.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

The Dark Side of the M -- Oh, Wait

Another quick-hit post while I'm underwater.

I thought Cirque did a nice job on Saturday with the interview with Dennis Hope, the guy who claims to own not only the moon, but close to an additional 100 celestrial bodies, mostly other solar system planets and their moons (although, oddly, not the sun).  He sells pieces of it at bargain prices (a double sawbuck will get you a nice plot on the moon).  You can laugh if you want, but the guy has made close to $10 million selling this worthless paper.  Honest to God.

You can find the epicenter of his activities at

Dennis Hope wearing his
Lunar Embassy polo
Mike and Cash balanced respect and politeness with just an edge of incredulity, and it was an interesting interview that moved along nicely.  As it went on, Mr. Love opened up some, and, depending on your point of view, his (i) unhingedness, or (ii) sheer audacious fraudmastery, emerged in full flower.
I did think it was amusing that one or both of the Siroises were under the impression that the sun only shines on one side of the moon, with the other side in permanent darkness. 
Mr. Hope politely corrected them.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Sat Give-Up

So sorry, Confessors, I've been buried and that condition will continue for awhile.  Just popping by to freshen the thread.

For the commenter who asked if I had commented on the Mike's-Mind ranking of the elements of the drum kit:  No, although I did hear it.  I was just delighted that something was on Mike's mind.  (Or  .  .  . was it a later segment?  Not sticking in RAM.)

The thought occurred to me that Mike was parodying Junior's Rankings of the Mundane, each of which is, of course, riskier and braver than the one before.  Since Mike also ranks things (members of old bands) that have fewer than a handful of things to rank, this suspicion is growing.

So hey, there you go, your starter topic:  Mike's Rankings, with a Cameo Appearance by Junior's Rankings, and is Mike teasing Junior?  Is this revenge for what Mike sees as Muser discrimination against Hardline e-brake material, even though Mike has won (questionable voter judgment) the last two weeks?

Fried Chicken Talk also welcome.

Big Changes Coming at The FAN Talk is always in season.

Sorry for the lack of content recently.

Please dayconfess responsibly.  I'll check back later tonight.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Let's Tahk Gambling (2) -- and an MTC Challenge to The Musers

In the string to the last post, Anonymous 946 writes:

The chances George or Junior would be at a break-even level betting college/pro football punter is about .000001% Being a consistent winner is about 3 more zeros. Due to vig, it takes 55%+ to be a winning sports bettor. And that's reputable casinos, taking a chance with an online site or a shady bookie who vigs it up or throws bad square lines jumps that total to 58-60%, which nowadays is virtually impossible for even the Billy Walters and Bob Voulgaris-types (google to see what I'm talking about).

Appreciate the info, 946.  But you're not addressing my point (no one has), at least not directly. But maybe you are doing so indirectly.

If what you say about college/pro betting is correct (and what you say is consistent with Junior's statements in the segment in question), then the Musers' excellent record by the end of the year is entirely illusory and accounted solely by their high school picks.

Is that possible? Sure. Let's assume sixteen weeks of predictions. Let's further assume that in fact, high school games are easier to pick, as Junior suggests.  (And recall my thought that high school games might well be easier to pick since one is only picking winners, not points, and school dominance and won-loss records are probably very good indicators of success on a week-to-week basis, especially as the year goes on.)   And let's assume that in eight of those weeks, Junior is 3-2, and in eight he is 4-1. That's a net plus of 32 games, and would account for most if not all of their winning margin by the end of the year. 

Of course, Junior will not have a high school winning week every week, so let's assume that over 5 x 16 = 80 games, Junior is 50-30 -- contributing 20 games to his margin.   Now let's look at the college/pro games, a total of 160 games. I forget the margin of games over .500, but isn't it around 30 or so? Let's say that with the college and pros, Junior goes 85-75 -- wild guess. A ten-game contribution to a (let's say) 30-game winning margin. As noted, it is not a stretch to imagine the remaining 20 being made up with the high school picks, accounting for a nice 135-105 W-L record overall. 

What about our bets? Well, according to 946, to break even after paying your bookie you have to win 55% of the time. 85/160 = 53%. The Plainsman theory FAILS.   

What is this telling us? It is telling us that -- if our assumption about the RELATIVE ease of picking high school games is correct -- then despite the fact that they make up only one-third of the picks, high school games are disproportionately influential in the Musers' overall flashy W-L record AND their winning margin over the Unlucky P1.

Therefore, let the call go forth from MTC to those Gentlest of Musers -- ditch the high school predictions this fall and go solely with college and pro games.

Let's see what happens.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Let's Tahk G__________ -- and a Historic Post


Last week The Gentle Ones were talking gambling.  I don't recall what the hook was, but Junior issued a statement that brought me up short.  He said that if he were in Las Vegas gambling, he was certain that he could not possibly do better than 50-50, and he was quite adamant about it.


In the past, I have written that if I knew how to place legal bets, I would take some money and bet with Junior on all of the college and pro games that they pick in a little game they call "Picking Games Against Some Unlucky P1."  Both Junior and George are always well over .500 on the year every year that I've listened, and my recollection is that overall, Junior usually wins.  I may be wrong about that and could be corrected, but in any event both George and Craig always, in my recall, pick more winners than losers.

But there's a wild card in those statistics -- the high school games.  I suppose if I kept track of their picks and the game results every week, I could figure out how the picks on the high school games influence the winning percentage.

Then I thought:  Perhaps -- just perhaps -- I could go to the source. 

With trembling digits, I typed an email to  -- that's right, mindspring, Craig being possibly the only human still residing at that benighted domain, asking him this very question.

Gent that he is, I had a response shortly -- in fact, at 9:29, in mid-Musing.  And, I believe for the first time in the history of this site, I am able to bring you what I believe to be the first ever communication of a Host directly to the Confessors, the inquiry being -- how do the high school games affect the contest results?  His reply:

"To be honest, I have no definite idea.  I would guess that it's close to a push.  I recall one year where I got every single one of the stupid random high school picks (Fart High vs Diarrhea Central) wrong.  Our overall record might be helped just a tad by the high school games--it seems the games get progressively harder to pick from HS to college to NFL, but again I don't have the stats to back that up.

"I don't mind if you use this explosive quote."

Thank you, Junior, and traveling mercies to you and the Missus.

My initial thought was that they would do a little better on the college and pro games because of their superior knowledge of the teams.  Then I realized that since the high school games were just win-lose picks, no points, it might be easier to pick winners based on a school's historical dominance or suckitude, or won-loss records as the season progressed. 

So we haven't ridded ourselves of that wild card.  But at a  minimum, I'm going to conclude that even if the high school picks are factored out, the college/pro picks would still be over .500, and comfortably so.

Because I am the Pope of Confessors, I will confess that I do not know how to gamble.  I mean, I really have no idea whether it is possible sitting in DFW to place a legal sports bet.  Can one do it at the casinos around here?  I couldn't drive to a casino every Friday anyway.  I'm assuming it cannot be done legally long-distance.  If I knew how, I would take a large or two and perform this precise experiment.

If anyone can instruct me -- again, only interested in legal solutions -- do tell.  And don't tell me to give you the grand and you'll legally bet it for me.

In the meantime, seems to me that Junior is far too modest regarding his sports-prediction prowess.

After all, they are the professional sports predictors.

Twitter:  @Plainsman1310

PS:  Sorry for this incredibly crappy-looking post.  Google Blogger has primitive word-processing tools, and this mess is unfixable.

Friday, March 8, 2013

OPEN THREAD: Friday Give-Up

Confessors, I'm on the run.  Wouldn't be posting this except with the increase in readers the comment threads are getting long and unwieldy.  May just have to put up with that.  Anyway, here are some random quick hits.

(1)  Are my ears deceiving me?  The TC-and-Muser computer screwups of the past week will not be candidates on the E-Brake?  Cannot have anything to do with the length of TC's misery -- this is a station policy at work here that wants to lower the volume on the continuing problems arising from the inexpert move to Victory.

(2)  The Hardline did a live spot on Wednesday similar to its taped Texas Land and Cattle piece where the boys parody the copywriter's tendency to introduce each piece of dialogue with the speaker using the name of the listener.  In live spot, which may also have been for TL&C, they took this to an extreme and by the end of the spot they were screaming at each other.  Very funny.

(3) I've heard Mike and Ty read some copy about something or other that talks about "30 megabits per second."  Are megabits any longer a meaningful measure of digital performance?

All right, that's it.  Get us started, someone.

Monday, March 4, 2013

OPEN THREAD: Them Changes

Man, I had another article started, but I don't want to hex the mojo, know what I mean?

I don't have any new thoughts to share about Ben & Skin's contract situation.  I don't have any  new thoughts to share about the predicted demise of RaGE.  No new musings on the peripatetic Greggo.  Other than thinking that the half-hour I spent listening to the G-Bag Nation a few weeks ago was my most painful aural experience since they stopped using chalk on chalkboards, I don't have much to say about The Fan's overall presentation.  Since it is not possible for me to care less about ESPN, none of its changes, including Ben & Skin's departure, are quickening my pulse.  Nope, can't think of anything new to say about these things.

But I'll bet you can.

I'll get you started and I'm going to leave this thread up for a few days.  I think the rumblings are going to start getting closer to the surface.

I thought Ben & Skin were OK on The Ticket, and I know a lot of Confessors like them a lot.  I regret to say I don't think I heard more than ten minutes of their show on ESPN -- when I had discretionary radio time midday, I was building up my BaD listening hours.  My problem with them at the time was that while they were both really likable guys and the show was real sportsy, and they had a great intro, they spent way too much time commenting ironically on their own commentary, frequently getting stuck in a spiral of self-reference that brought the proceedings to a halt.  And the show suffered from what I came to call Ben & Skin Disease -- hosts that sound too much alike, a malady that I'm only now starting to get over on Cirque.  I am certain that a daily show probably required a more, shall we say, direct approach to broadcasting and if they pop up somewhere I'll be tuning in for a shakedown cruise.

Which I have selected as the hook for this open thread.

A commenter on the last thread gave a very nice multi-part analysis on why he thinks RaGE may be in the decline-and-fall mode, and there was a report that The Hardline had stated in terms that The Fan was looking for a new afternoon drive show.  And there has been some suggestion in these pages that that show might feature Messrs. Rogers and Wade.

Now, as I said a bit ago, my recent speculations have crashed and burned, so I'm not predicting that this hypothetical will take place.  But I will ask you to assume that Ben & Skin replace RaGE and compete against the last hour of BaD, WTDS, and all of The Hardline (if they time the shows at The Fan as they do now).

Do you think you might switch your allegiance from The Hardline (or 2-3 BaD) to Ben & Skin even after the initial curiosity wore off?  Of course, we don't know what a Ben & Skin show on The Fan would consist of, but assuming that you are somewhat favorably disposed to B&S, do you think they would give The Hardline a run for its money?

OK, what if they kept Sybil?


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Twitter: @Plainsman1310