Thursday, August 29, 2013

Not a Big Fan

I'm not a big Fight Night fan.  I like to be on the same side as the P1 in most things, but this is one where I take a side tour into Weenieland.

Back in the days when I wrote short pieces, I wrote this (2009):

"Isn't The Ticket taking a big risk with stuff like this? I'm sure they make everyone use appropriate gloves and headgear, but isn't it inevitable that when you get amateurs of varying degrees of skill biffing it out with one another, someone is really going to get seriously hurt?

"Try to imagine what would happen to The Ticket if someone died as a result of a fight that it sponsored.  It wouldn't kill the station, but that shadow would hang over the yucks and frathouse good times for months.

"I guess the good news is that Fight Night means that lawyers aren't running The Ticket."

And the broadcast itself too frequently devolves into simultaneous screaming, with everyone saying "OOOhhhh" when someone gets smacked a good one.

WAIT:  Of course, I did write a longer Fight Night piece where my weenosity came to full flower.  You can read it here:  Longer Fight Night Piece

Friday, August 23, 2013

Muser Triumph + Quick Hits

So a variety of circumstances have knocked me off the rails today.  After determining that I my chances of remaining employed even should my employer discover that I am completely blowing off the day at >78%, I'm sitting in a location where two -- maybe three -- Spanish-language radio stations are blasting, it's uncomfortably warm, and I'm a little buzzed.  My employer has a dim awareness of my true identity (I've decided that I'm actually The Plainsman, and everything else is an act), but he never checks the site.  Although I hated to leave my closely-reasoned and, let's face it, correct anti-spoiler analysis, I realized that the time is perfect for getting up an article, listening to Robert and David and The Hard Ones (at Frisco's Burger Girl -- geez, the hospitality vendors along the Tollway not far from the prospective Kowboys Korporate Komplex must be thrilled, including especially sometime Hardline destination Tailgaters, which is literally (literally!) a short walk from the site at Warren and the Tollway), and even more perfect for simply refusing to do the job for which I am compensated.

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As already reported by Confessors commenting on the last thread, The Musers thrashed it today with their Musers' Topic Wheel Fart Talk.  I laughed at what they were saying, and it was fun listening to them having genuine fun.  

My reception was very spotty during that period and I missed a little bit of it.  I wonder whether they mentioned one of my favorite fart-related phrases, which I believe I learned from a Muser or Hardline discussion of farting some time back:  Farting while walking = "crop-dusting." 

I'm trying to remember the other Muser utterance that made me laugh out loud in the car.  I think it was the 8:40 replay of the Buzz-'n'-Knoxie talk.  Well done, with a cameo by Junior in a rare triple role.  

I actually have visual proof that finding farts funny is bred deeply into the living tissue of the male.   Mrs. Plainsman was sitting on a couch with a baby on her knee.  I'm not good at guessing the ages of little ones, but I'm going to guess about 10 months.  I am sitting next to Mrs. P.  The photo is taken right at the moment when I am making a prodigious farting noise with my mouth, my lips nearly invisible like hummingbird wings.  The baby's head is thrown back and he's laughing.

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Several Confessors have recommended rabbit ears to us unfortunate Time-Warner Cable people who can't get CBS and some other stations.  Also heard Intentional Grounding with the Breaking News that TWC is  offering rabbit ears to its customers, which frankly isn't very encouraging for a resolution anytime soon.  I dropped in to my AV vendor and asked them about that, and they said they doubted very much it would work in our house with the kind of insulation and roof-lining we had.  They also looked me over carefully and said that it was actually somewhat tricky to install and use in conjunction with cable.  Seeing as how I barely have the patience to get Blogger to work well enough to eke out my gems on this site, I decided either to wait, or get DirecTV in here.

By the way, my vendor strongly recommended DirecTV over Dish Network.  Not sure why.  Any of y'all have a preference?  A local relative has Dish Network and likes it, and I note that Warren ("The Oracle of Omaha") Buffett recently invested in it.  Actually, the vendor's highest recommendation went to Verizon FIOS, but it (and AT&T U-verse) are not available out here on the plains.

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I understand those Confessors who don't find Intentional Grounding an attractive steady diet, but I like it a lot and I think I would also enjoy it it in large, frequent doses.  But it doesn't sound strictly Tickety, that's for sure.  

If NPR and The Ticket got drunk at a bar and engaged in a wild, inebriated night of swiving, the resulting offspring would sound like Intentional Grounding. 

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A big MTC thanks to Richie Whitt for his personal appearance in the last thread commiserating with Your Plainsman on the severe nut-kicking he suffered for his courageous position against stealth spoilers outside of the confines of an announced segment on the spoiled teevee show in question.  (I know -- referring to oneself in the third person is a sign of a seriously unhinged personality.)

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Confessors derive great pleasure out of whipping Corby for his repetition of pet phrases.  Well, Danny and Mike are now doing it with their impromptu announcement of fake segments with the title of the phrase in question whenever Corby tosses it out as a sentence intro.  Danny, in his best fake-announcer voice:  "And now, with 'LET ME TELL YOU,' -- Corby."  My candidate:  "To be perfectly honest with you." 

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Hits remain strong since the demise of the Fan and the BaD Radio Drama.  My thanks to you all, including the nut-kickers.

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OK, gotta put the dogs out, feed them, take drugs, and hustle off to meet Mrs. Plainsman for dinner and the Ticket-endorsed "The Way Way Back."

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Sunday, August 18, 2013

This Must Stop

That title almost contained a bad word.

I write tonight of a Ticket tendency that sent me temporarily into the arms of The Fan.  (Very temporarily.)

The Ticket guys like to talk about their favorite TV shows.  This is not only fine with me, it's got me on to some great shows I wouldn't otherwise have seen.  I 'ppreciate that.

But I can't always watch the shows in real time, and lots of times I start watching the series from the beginning while the real-time broadcasts are already in their second or third season.  I'll bet lots of you do the same thing.  DVDs, DVR, Netflix, On Demand -- you can watch the stuff in order, catch up.  Newfangled technology, amazing.  Me, I almost never watch the show when scheduled so Mrs. Plainsman, or your equivalent, gentle Confessor, can watch her network shows.

So when the shows tease that they're going to be talking about a show I'm watching, and that segment comes on, I switch away to avoid spoilers.  No problem at all.

A bit ago I was listening to a show and a host I like a lot (which describes all shows and all hosts, come to think of it), and I'll be damned if this guy didn't drop a gigantic spoiler in the tease for the segment.  I said another one of those bad words, loudly.  I let that go, switched away when the segment came on, switched back later.  And then, when the segment was long over and the showgram was wrapping up, the same host dropped another gigantic spoiler for the same show.

These were the absolute worst instances of this, but not the only ones.

Memo to hosts:  No goddam frackin' spoilers before you get to the segment, or after it's over. 

Your Plainsman, and the audience you influence to watch the shows you like, thanks your asses.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Bob and Dan Are Out

after many, many years, as The Dallas Hockey Stars' post-game show hosts.  Or is it just Bob?  Or just Bob and sometimes Dan?  I confess (of course) I do not hear much Stars pre- post- or during game on The Ticket so I'm not sure who is being replaced.

The Old Dumparoo

I happened to be tuned in at 2 PM yesterday when Bob disclosed the Stars announcement.  At the time it seemed like they were talking about both of them losing the gig, but the wording of the announcement gave me  the impression that only one person was being replaced.  So I dunno.   I thought sure someone would offer a comment on this to the last thread, as we have a number of hockey-loving Confessors, so if anyone can enlighten us I'd appreciate it.

I have a recollection that Bob and/or Dan had alluded to the possible end of their Stars-related broadcasting at the end of the season.

And indeed, Bob did not seemed stunned by this news.

However, I did think that both he and Dan, and Donovan, were a little surprised and maybe even a little hurt that the Stars did not make a single mention of the many years of service Bob/Dan have offered to the Stars and their fans.  And I gather it has been quite a long time -- did Bob say 13 years?  Again, I'd appreciate accurate info.  Whatever it was, I was very surprised to hear it.  I had no idea the Stars gig was so substantial and long-lived.

Makes me wonder if perhaps some friction had developed with the Stars.  I wouldn't think so -- Bob and Dan are the only show on The Ticket, and probably the only show in Cool Metro, that does some serious Stars-talk and who actually know something about hockey.  And nothing against Bruce or his new co-host, but Bob and Dan, or either one of them -- that's quality broadcasting. That's gold-plated DFW radio royalty, and I'm not being snotty.  

So one would think that the old heave-ho would have been accompanied by at least some expression of gratitude.

It is unlikely to make anyone feel better, but in any event, this fetching lass and My Ticket Confession thank Bob and Dan for their long-time yeoman service to the Stars, and to the cause of hockey in Cool Metro, for the past whoa, long time.

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Note from a Remote

Dropped in on the remote in Frisco yesterday to check on The Hardline and chat up the cute bartenders at Tailgaters.  Nice, unpretentious sports bar.  

Show sounded good, very clear in the room, except that for some reason Danny's contributions were muffled and completely inaudible through the speakers. 

It's interesting -- people come to hang out and chat with their friends; only a few people trying to hear the show.  Although when they mentioned the Cowboys moving to Frisco, they got a fairly widespread reaction, so either people are halfway listening, or their ears pricked up when they heard the word "Frisco." 

Corby has a habit of fingering his head-mic during the broadcast.

Mike was quaffing much beer.  Corby remarked on it.

During a break a gorgeous, leggy Ticket Chick was showing Mike some photo on her iPhone that was causing some amusement.  Um, woot.

While I was there, only one guy came up to chat with them during a break, spoke very briefly to Mike, who was receptive. Corby went to the men's room at one point, no one took the opportunity to come up and say hi.

I still marvel at how these guys can broadcast so naturally, their voices blaring out into the room, with dozens and dozens of people making noise, sometimes hollering, all around them.  It probably has something to do with the insulating effect of the headset.

Corby's hair is back in full Ruth Buzzi mode.

Anyway, nice remote.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

BREAKING: An Actual Major Station Announcement That Is More or Less Major

Or is it?

The "Ticket App" that apparently operates to allow easy listening to the stream, with the ability to pause, rewind, access Tickety humans via Twitter.  A score feature.  Rich reports that his beta use has been terrific.  If you get a call, it pauses the stream and it picks up where you stopped.

It's called "Sports Day Talk".   iTunes, Android.

Get it and report.

UPDATE:  Make "SportsDay" one word when you search.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Notes from Camp

Ladies and gentlemen, my apologies for being away for so long. My work and household duties have escalated recently and my posts are, unfortunately, going to be few and far between for a while.  The commitments cut into both listening and writing time. I do keep an eye on comments and have appreciated most everyone's observation of the site's unwritten rules.

I have made a few notes from the last couple of weeks, some ticket-related, some not. Nothing too profound here, but maybe this will get some the threads kick-started:

          1.     Junior Miller:  "There are too many idiots in the world, and half of them are commenting on websites."  (Referring to comments to news items in the DMN.)

          2.     Both the Hardline and Musers have remarked on the fact that there seem to be lots of people hanging around Southern California who "aren't doing so well."  No kidding.  I have a lot of good feelings for California, having lived there with great pleasure for five years in the '90's (hence my fondness for Lee "Hacksaw" Hamilton), but it's a holy mess.  Decades of mismanagement (Democrat and Republican), have left the state broke.  Its legislature is a corrupt candy machine (Democrats are the problem here), devastating state taxes that are going higher, enormous public payroll, vast welfare benefits for illegal immigrants, it goes on and on.  The leading candidate for a catastrophic Detroit-style bankruptcy.  It's America's Greece.   Meanwhile, Texas still can't get free agents to come here.

          3.    Can we get a report on how Norm and BaD handled the camp?  I heard zero minutes of either show while they were in Oxnard.

           I actually like the travelogue aspects of The Ticket's travel to faraway places, yes, even Corby's stories.  I do wonder whether there is a whole lot of sportsy value to having all those shows out there, and at Super Bowls, and at playoffs.  Some take it more seriously than others.  I would think that Norm and BaD, broadcasting during daylight hours, would snag a relevant interview or two along the line. How was their time out there?

          4.     This site's deepest condolences to Mike Rhyner and his loved ones on his mother's passing.  She seemed like a sweet lady in her few interactions with the station, and Mike's voice took on a different tone when she came up.  One had the idea that one would mess with that woman at one's considerable personal peril.  RIP.

          5.     Several commenters have taken the opportunity of Mike's occasional absences to note how good Corby can be when he has responsibility for running a presentation. He's also on good behavior with other hosts.  This site has mentioned this on several occasions.   More than one person has observed that perhaps Corby's excesses are encouraged by the kind of chemistry he has with Mike. I got an e-mail from Confessor N:  

"Perhaps it's just me, but me and some of my real good P1 friends all find Corby with anyone other than Rhyner actually very good, crisp, funny and more likable.  It started last week with Corby manning the ship when Rhynes suddenly left Oxnard for his mom's illness.  I thought his chemistry with Craig, Gordon, Dan, Donny, the Commander et al was great.  Then Friday it clicked for me when Rhynes was out for the funeral  - I like Corby leading with Danny in the co-pilot seat and Jake as the on mic producer.  The chemistry is much more free-flowing.   I respect Rhynes but it is clear to me now that he gives this thing the 'cruise control'/'I don't give a damn' vibe."

I think that's right.  He knows he's untouchable, nearing the end of his reign, and feels little obligation to incentivize Corby or Danny.  Although I will say, once in a while the last few weeks, it has seemed to me that Mike, while clearly tired from his schedule and the emotional drain of his mother's passing, has generated some pretty strong segments.

          6.     Greg Williams's blog:  Seems like there's not much to it any more -- song lyrics, definitions, and recently a TMI post from Jenn on "what Greggo's really like" that didn't exactly flatter the guy.  Apparently they are moving, which, she reports, will make it hard to keep the blog up to date (although it seemed like they weren't actually moving, just planning for a move).

           7.     Gordon is 100% correct about the Geico Old MacDonald's spelling ad.  The joke about spelling "cow" is completely wrong and unfunny because it misses the real joke that the Geico ad writer apparently misremembered.  Bet I can find it  .  .  .  yup, took me about 12 seconds:

A Hoosier, a Kentuckian and a West Virginian were on a Hollywood TV quiz show. The host asked them to complete the sentence: "Old MacDonald had a ..." The Indianan said, "Old MacDonald had a carburetor." "Sorry," said the MC. "That's incorrect." "Old MacDonald had a flat tire," said the Kentuckian. "Wrong," said the host. "Old MacDonald had a farm," said the West Virginian. "That's correct!" shouted the MC. "Now for $200,000, spell farm." The West Virginian thought hard and then spelled carefully: "E-I-E-I-O."

The Geico ad should either have had Old MacDonald spell "farm," which he then spells "E-I-E-I-O," or spell "cow" and spell that the same way but not preceded by C-O-W.  Anyway, it's a bad ad.  In fact, all of the Geico ads that use the "well, did you know .  .  . " format are weak.

          8.     However, Gordon and George are entirely wrong on "The Girl from Ipanema," a wonderful bossa nova pop song.  The English lyrics were originally meant to be sung by a man, not a woman (Astrud Gilberto having made it famous), which accounts for the gigantic grammatical blunder "she looks straight ahead, not at he" when sung by a woman -- should be:  "she looks straight ahead, not at me," sung by a man.

          9.     Love George, we all love George, but he has apparently graduated to dropping 100% of his g's on present participles and gerunds (-ing words).  I swear, one morning a few days ago it sounded like he was deliberately workin' at droppin' all those g's.  I wish he wouldn't.  It makes him sound hickish, which he's not.  Maybe it's his increased C&W profile, he's got to use some kind of backcountry patois to keep it real.

          10.    Matt Garza has a tiny brain.

          11.     While we're on the subject of Ticket word usage:  Is The Ticket the last bastion of the overuse of the word "awesome"?  It was bad enough when this perfectly lovely, evocative word was devalued back in the Bill-and-Ted's-Excellent-Adventure days, but it seems to me that the language has finally moved on with the exception of George Dunham and BaD radio.  Sorry, man, every time I hear someone on the station use that word (and it's not just those guys), I think -- you know, this station really needs to get out more.

          12.     It has been pointed out that the signals (1310/104.1) have been sucking more than usual lately, probably because of the hot weather. That's not an excuse. The best station in the country shouldn't be hostage to North Texas summers.  Just more evidence of how really bad these signals are.

          13.     Johnny Manziel is a sociopath.

          14.    Caught a little bit of Ben and Skin one day, only about ten minutes.  This is not a general Ben and Skin opinion, only observation about the tiny slice that I heard.  I want to give those gents a fair shot, and that just can't be done by flipping over for the odd segment.   They had some Ranger talk about "overpaying" players (Elvis Andrus was on the griddle at that particular moment) that did not make any sense to me in the context of a free market for players and widespread information on their current skills.  (I think that was Skin but cannot be certain.)  

We are very fond of Kevin Turner around here, but during my short time of listening I caught a very unfortunate remote segment that only lasted about 35 seconds that ended with Kevin asking some group of people how many were ovulating.   Could not figure out what the bit was supposed to be about at the outset, and, whatever it was, it cratered almost instantaneously and B&S seemed somewhat startled to have the show tossed back to them.  Sorry, KT.  I promise I'll get around to giving B&S the benefit of a sustained listen one of these days.

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Hope to see you all soon.

LATER:   Just saw this post.  Blogger has once again defeated my efforts to make the thing look nice.  Sorry for all the inconsistent margins, fonts, spacing.  

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Wednesday, August 7, 2013 BONUS:  Today's Ticket Traffic Twist Julie Mac, who looks like she sounds: