Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Rules of the Confessional

Attend, O Confessors.

This is intended to be a site for people who like The Ticket.  Maybe they have an issue here and there, but, in general, I want Confessors to be fans, or, as they have come to be known, "The P1."

I want people to like coming here and know they're going to be treated with respect, or at least not put down by witless, content-free snark.

And, should a Ticket employee wander by, I want them to come away with the impression that they've been in the company of people who care about the station and think carefully about their reactions to it -- not a bunch of snippy teenagers.

So forgive me if I advise that I'm weary of refereeing pissy little flame wars between readers who can't express themselves without taking a shot at others. 

And weary as well of visitors who apparently don't like anything about The Ticket, this site, or Your Plainsman.

Or don't forgive me.  Don't care.

My past warnings have gone unheeded.  So, much as I hate to do it, I'm cracking down.


1.   Shots.   No criticisms of the person of any prior commenter.  If you have a disagreement, express your view in a way that addresses the issue or the facts or the opinion.  However, even brief phrases:

   --   impugning intelligence or motives of a prior commenter;

   --   asserting that prior commenters are all the same guy;

   --   suggesting that a prior commenter lacks reading or comprehension skills;

   --   suggesting that a commenter hasn't listened to the station enough, or for long enough, or is otherwise not a good Ticket citizen;

   --   is generally nasty towards another,

will cause your confession to hit the pail instantly.  Criticism of opinions is OK, but do it by making your own supportable point or making a legitimate debater's criticism of the prior comment.

I don't care how good your confession is in other respects.  The most brilliant comment that contains a phrase like "here's a thought -- listen to the station" will get bounced.

Subjective?  Absolutely.  Here's a rule of thumb:  Read your post before you send it.  If you see a phrase which, if it were said about you would upset you and make you want to respond in kind -- take it out.

2.    Vulgarity.  Don't use it.

3.    Tone.  Angry, hateful, threatening, overly emotional comments -- out.  I'm serious about all of these comments, and this one may seem slight, but I'm telling you:  Tone it down.

4.    Name-Calling.  Applies not just to fellow Confessors, but to anyone.  

5.    Stuff That's Just Too Wrong.  The other day got a comment from a guy ragging on T.C. and Corby.  Same old stuff, didn't like it, but met the standards in effect at that time.  Was going to publish, then noticed that he seemed to think that the midday host's name was "Stern."

[5.5  (added 03-07-15):  Commentary on subjects' personal lives is strongly discouraged.  Exceptions may be made if the matter relates to on-air events.]

6.   Anything That Strikes Me As Designed to Pick a Fight.  You figure it out.

Here's a further suggestion:  Cut and paste your comment into a file before sending it.  If you don't see your comment within a few hours, I've probably made it go away.   If you still think it's worthwhile, go back and figure out why I bounced it.  Fix it and resubmit.

Guys, I'm sorry about this, but I'm even sorrier that the comments have gotten so sorry.  I'd say a good third to a fourth of the comments that I published on the last thread would not have made it under the foregoing standards. 

You will be amazed at how easy it is to express your point of view -- even one that is critical of the point of a prior comment -- without impugning the character or talents of your fellows on this site.

Don't write me complaining about my judgment on comments.  I'm not interested.  You want the objective standard of unfettered commentary, there are other homes for you on the plains of the Internet.

Let's clean this site up.

One more thing.

UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE, THIS SITE IS NOT ACCEPTING ANY COMMENTS, PRO OR CON, ABOUT T.C. FLEMING.  He's a part of The Ticket and fair game, but the volume of comments on him since his return to BaD Radio and weekend shows is grossly out of proportion to his significance to The Ticket.  Also, I'm mortally tired of them and no one has anything new to say.  I'll advise when this prohibition has been lifted.  I'm inclined to bounce all comments that even mention his name.

"Ragonk" is permitted.

This means you.
Come on now.  Let's keep this site going.  Let's make it a place that attracts the attention of people who matter and where you can be heard without bringing a bunch of cheap crap down on your head.

And let's have some fun.

Thank you for shopping at My Ticket Confession.

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Thursday, January 22, 2015

A Visit to Guy's Night Out, Featuring Conner Crisp

I stopped by Rock 101 Little Elm to sample a bit of Guy's Night Out.   Was able to stay for about 45 minutes, hour.

First, we need to clear something up.

Rock 101 Little Elm is the name of the venue.

But it is not in Little Elm.  

It is east of FM 423/Main Street, although just east -- and that's Frisco, despite the trademark.  If you would like confirmation of this, see The Rock 101 Little Elm Website and scroll down to check out the address.

GNO was pretty cool, I thought.  Fun venue, loved the old 70's and 80's music videos running on the screens, some video trivia all but two contestants were ignoring, grub looked good.  Great crowd.

Mike, Corby, and George discuss American Sniper

Hosts who weren't broadcasting mingled with the crowd, happy to be chatting with the P1s.  Never seen them otherwise.

Dan looked somehow healthier than I've seen him at other venues in the past.  Perhaps it was the purple lighting.  Corby looked stout, but I think it was probably just his TCU hoodie.

Unlike some other GNOs, if you were paying sufficient attention and situated yourself strategically, you could hear most of what was going on in the show.  

During the ads, one of the promo ladies ran a mini-trivia contest on the stage between two attendees for valuable prizes.  I signed up for a drawing I was assured would take place in ten minutes, but did not.  I had to leave a half-hour or so later, so I don't know if I won or not.  Or what I would have won if I'd have won.  It was a little noisy.

An early round table.
On my way out, I had a chinwag with a chap at the Ticket promo table.  The promo people had apparently dug deep, deep into the promo closet, because, other than some forlorn t-shirts, the only premiums they were offering were Craig Miller trading cards.  No one else's -- just Craig's.  They were very aged.  They featured Craig with dark hair and, on the reverse side, listed his nicknames as "Junior" and -- care to guess? -- "Professor."  His show is identified as "Dunham & Miller" -- no mention of The Musers, no mention of Gordon.  (I didn't see Gordon there, but he may have shown up later; I didn't get to hear a lot of the show after I left.)

Anyway, the promo intern was a pleasant guy, enthusiastic, eager to promote the station.  Hopeful of a shot at JV status and perhaps the big time some day.  I got his name, which is featured in the title of this post, and told him to check in.

Cat and Promo Director, keep an eye on this up-and-comer.  

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Live By the Ratings . . . .

Does the recent sports-talk radio ratings -- what do we call it?  blip? slide? anomaly? outlier? trend? -- mean anything?  I suppose if we knew the right word to use, we'd have our answer.

The improved Fan ratings probably do have something to do with its affiliation with the Cowboys.  So we probably won't have our answer until a quarter or two's worth of ratings books come out and we can see what's up.

There are a couple of things I can say about this, having heard from a radio guy I trust on this subject:

--   Don't discount the loss of listeners to sports-talk generally.  Some of the hit to The Ticket's ratings is almost certainly because people are turning to music, not other sports stations.

--   Ticket management is not discounting the recent ratings.  "Concern" may be too strong a word, but my source does note -- and I think we can all hear this just listening to the station -- that the CTO are  cracking down on time management and making sure that the hosts to to breaks on time.  Even The Hardline, which only rarely shows any interest in the clock, seems to have gotten religion, at least temporarily.  Even The Orphanage kept one eye on the clock yesterday.

--  The on-air talent is also not brushing this off.   I heard from someone whose claim to have Ticket ties I tend to credit that there is an overall sense, perhaps not shared by all hosts, that there is a need to "step up their game."   Have we not heard more from Mike R since these ratings books began to appear than we've heard from him in ages?  (And isn't The Hardline somewhat better?)

--  There is no industry scuttlebutt about major changes at The Ticket in the foreseeable future.  Any buttholding would have to be for something pretty marginal that hasn't escaped The Ticket bubble, at least as far as industry insider dirt is concerned.

Don't submit a comment that I'm Predicting The End of The Ticket, OK?  Sure, after a couple decades and guys getting older and richer there will be some changes someday.   I will suggest that if people get fed up with a show or a host and start wandering to other sportsy stations or returning to music, it's hard to get those lost listeners back by those same shows or hosts all of a sudden "stepping up their game" or taking their show responsibilities more seriously.  Maybe the Cowboys being with The Fan have skewed matters -- but that's why stations want those franchises, to get people to move that dial, give them a try when they wouldn't have done so otherwise; maybe they'll stick around if they like what they hear or even just get used to the new voices.

I think The Musers should revive their campaign to have Cumulus spring for a billboard, maybe one of those electronic things that are popping up.

Tough business.

See you at TicketStock.  Probably won't try to get a booth this year, but if the harvest is good maybe in the coming year I can put away some coin, get a booth in 2016, print up some T-shirts to sell, hire some redhead booth tunas, have some fun with The Confessors.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Random Wednesday Quick Hits

(1)  Sometimes I think the world is divided into George people and Junior people.  Love George, no major issues, but where they differ I usually find myself on the Junior side.  This morning, for example, in the hugely underrated and sadly underheard 5:30 segment, we learned that Junior is an Amy Poehler person and George is a Tina Fey person.  QED.

(2)  The real story at KTVT is not the departure of Babe Laufenberg, but Karen Borta's departure from the 10 PM news to CBS mornings.  Very, very sad.

Quite sad indeed.

Yes, sad.

(3)  Junior made an OK case for the non-averageness of Jason Garrett today.  I dunno, man, I'm still not entirely buying it.  He didn't get the defense to behave itself.  He didn't finally get Romo to stop jumping around behind the O-line like Nureyev and option out of every play.  He didn't cut down on the penalties or finally get some of his players to learn the plays.  How do I know this?  I don't, but I surmise it because he hadn't done any of these things in his prior years here.  And I still think he's afraid of his players, lets them boss him around.   But Junior persuades me that he's OK at communicating a consistent message and walking around.

(4)  Now completely out on all "catch" talk.  Don't mind Cowboys talk generally.

(5)  Understand the "keep Dez, care less about Murray because hard to find stellar wide receivers and not so hard to find satisfactory running backs" argument.  Still  .  .  .  anyone else interested in taking a real, real hard look at giving Dez a galaxy-class contract?  Got a bad feeling about him, despite his growth on the field.   And, of course, the Cowboys' long-term maladroit cap management enters into the discussion here.

(6)  You think Cumulus would sell My Ticket Confession a booth at Ticketstock?  Anyone out there know how much a small booth in an undesirable corner of the Irving Convention Center would cost?  Any Ticket sales people reading this?  Drop me an email.

(7)  Favorite Kevin Costner movies:  "Silverado" and "Malibu Hot Summer," nka "Sizzle Beach, U.S.A."

(8)  Scattershooting, wondering why Ticketstock is returning to the Irving Convention Center.  

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Friday, January 9, 2015

Ménage a Troy

Frequently amused by The Ticket, but how often does one laugh out loud sitting and listening solo?

I did, yesterday, with the replay of the Fake Michael Irvin call to Fake Troy Aikman.  George was doing his usual masterful job with Michael, who was calling Troy to try to get him to make a "Finish the Fight" video in support of the Cowboys playoff run.

All Troy/Gordon wanted to do was to finish preparing his waffles.  The deadpan delivery, the pauses, the timing, the implied incomprehension -- man, I could just see Troy spooning the mix onto the griddle with head cocked to secure the smartphone to his ear, thoroughly annoyed.  Brilliantly underplayed by Gordon -- no punch lines, no inside references, no multiple entendres.  Just a hilarious contrast between George's Michael in a frenzied lather over the Cowboys, and Gordon's Troy just trying to get some flapjacks underway.

Laughing again just thinking about it.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Hold on to Your Butts . . . but Tentatively and with Good Thoughts

Bearing in mind that Michael and Mike call each other Shoopy, and that Michael tweeted his tweet an hour before Mike did.  Something unpleasant afoot?  If I hear anything, I'll let you know right away.

  1. the grey wolf: dead...3:30 on the Ticket
  2. SHOOPY NO!!!!!!!!!

    Tuesday, January 6, 2015

    I'm Trying to Figure Out Whether the Ad that Says That The Ticket Invented the Phrase "Cowboys, Cowboys, Cowboys!" Is Supposed to Be Joking

    Whether or not it is, it's a sure bet that those who wish for less Cowboys talk are going to be disappointed.

    This morning on The Musers, Junior was reviewing the ratings.  The Cowboys-Lions game got a 48 share.  This is not only astronomically more than the run-of-the-mill Mavs/Rangers/Stars(!) game would get -- a Mavs game the same day, not broadcast against the Cowboys game, got something like a 1.5 share, that general order of magnitude -- it is double what Mavs and Rangers playoff games bring in.

    So anyone rationally programming The Ticket or any sports talker in DFW is not going to allocate much time to anything except the Cowboys during football season, and will liberally sprinkle Cowboys segments throughout the broadcast day even after the NFL season is a memory.

    So if you're sick of Cowboys talk -- a perfectly understandable reaction -- it's off to NPR or two ticks down the dial to The Ticket's stablemate KSCS.

    Thursday, January 1, 2015

    Happy New Year, Confessors

    No special insights to start the year. 

    I've been good with Drydock.  Norm, That Shake Joint Thang, a healthy dose of the JV.  Seems to have agitated some, but I've enjoyed what I've heard.

    Will try to get some meatier content up soon.  I think it was Gerry Todd who wants my views on TSJ; I've written a fairish amount on it in the past, pretty favorably, but may be time for another check-in since Jake and Sean seem to get so much reaction from commenters.

    Any thoughts for topics, drop me a line.  And I'm always open for guest posters.  Email is always open.

    Thank You for Shopping at My Ticket Confession in 2014.  Hoping the site continues to attract your interest in the coming year.