Archive for August, 2011

Are you in the comics?

August 31, 2011

My wife sometimes brings me comic strips that she says remind her of me.  Today, there was a panel with this guy sitting in front of a TV or was it a computer monitor.   The caption (dialogue read), “I blog, therefore I am.”

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Ray looking better and feeling stronger

August 30, 2011

Ray Moore is all dressed up today (Monday) and ready to go see the doctors and nurses.   His wife, Sara, and I went with him.   The pain of  shingles remains, but the medical experts gave him a good report on his vitals:  blood pressure, heart rate and blood density.  What an improvement!  My long time friend and former WSB-TV News Director rode in a wheel-chair a couple of weeks ago, but today his only support was a walker.  Though not as strong as he expects to be, Ray is confident he’ll soon be well enough to put the walker aside.

Ever the optimist, Ray is planning a cruise to the Carribean for him and  Sara.   Their scheduled sailing date is less than two months away.   The 89-year-old is determined and Sara says, “stubborn.”

B.S. spam

August 29, 2011

Those B.S. spams keep coming.    Here are three of the latest:  “I would be interested in more content like this from you.   I think a lot like you on this subject and your perspetive is interesting.  Will there be more?”

“Fascinating view on this.”

“My ideas precisely.”

“Glorious blog.”

As you can read, these are compliments that could apply to any blog.   The spamers are counting on my and other bloggers’ egoes to approve them and their e=mail addresses for the comment section of our blogs.     I can’t imagine many people fall for it.  But apparently enough do for the spamers to keep on spaming.

Why people watch, listen to and read the news

August 28, 2011

In my early days at WSB-Televsion, then News Director Ray Moore encouraged us to discuss “what is news?”.    One of the simplest of answers was, “news is whatever we say it is.”   Since the media want as many viewers, listeners and readers as possible, “what we say news is” often is a reflection of what news managers believe will attract the most people.   I was reminded of that while watching the 1954 movie, “Hobson’s Choice”.   It stars Charles Laughton .   His character was bemoaning how some unfavorable reporting about him was going to ruin him.   Another character tried to convince him that most people wouldn’t read the news article.   Laughton’s character answered, “Others trouble is why people read the newspaper.”      This story was set in England of the 1890s when there were no radios, televisions or internet.   The way we communicate has changed dramatically, but other’s trouble still may be the biggest attraction.

Meet two of our grandchildren

August 27, 2011

On the right is Katrianne Nichols.   Katie was more than 3 months premature when she emerged from her mother’s womb.  Below is Katie back when she weighed in at a little more than 2 pounds.   With her in the later pic is Katie’s brother, Carston.  Carston  soon will be 7.  Katie’s steadily gaining weight.  She’ll  be almost 16 pounds when she (we) celebrates (celebrate) her first birthday, September 1st.    It’s good to have a big brother to look out for you!  Way to go Carston!

Hurricanes and journalists

August 26, 2011

While people with good sense evacuate areas where hurricanes are expected, reporters and photographers are often headed toward the storm.  I’ve stood on many a beach- front with my photographer partner.   The photographer usually would anchor his tripod to a concrete column and try to find a buffer to shield the tripod and camera from the wind and water.  If you’re going to attempt a standup in front of the camera, you take a linebacker’s stance and dig your feet into the sand.  You need an especially tested wind-screen for your microphone.  Arming yourself with a few alliterative phrases is common.  For example, ” the wind and water are packing a powerful punch.”   They often really do.

Poorly and puret

August 25, 2011

You’ll find “poorly” in the dictionary, but it’s unlikely your dictionary will list “puret”.     In east Tennessee and southwest Virginia where I was born and raised, “poorly” and  “puret” were part of our language.   For example when we would go to visit my paternal grandparents on their farm, the adults would often ask grandpa, “how you  feelin’?”   If grandpa was not feeling well, he might say, “I’ve been right poorly this week.”     On the other hand, if  he was feeling good, grandpa would answer, “puret…feelin’ puret!”

Both words came to my mind during the past month when my friend and mentor Ray Moore observed his 89th birthday.    Ray was feeling poorly while battling a lingering case of shingles and the side effects of several meds. 
But now Ray seems to be on the road to feeling puret again.   Hallelujah!

Earthquakes in Georgia

August 24, 2011

The effects of an earthquake were felt in Georgia Tuesday.  It was not the first time.   I remember one that shook a small town near Macon when I had been with WSB-Television for only 4 years.   The year was 1964.   There have been many others through the years:  1811-1812, 1872, 1875, 1902, 1903 and 1944.    Feeling an earthquake in Georgia is unusual, but certainly not unprecedented.

Barking in the hallway

August 23, 2011

In the comment section of this blog, you can read a message from Ken Cosgrove.  Ken is a former photographer-reporter with WSB-Television.   He’s from the days of what we called a “one-man band”.   It was the 1960s.  Today we would call such talents a ” one- person band”.   After reading his comment on my blog, I contacted Ken via  e-mail.    Ken wrote that he enjoyed the “short time” spent on the WSB news teams.    Ken remembers his first day on the job at WSB.   He writes, “….Upon entering the employee entrance, I saw a police officer on his hands and knees coming down the hallway barking like a dog.   It was Officer Don.”     That would be Don Kennedy who dressed as a police officer for the show known as “The Popeye Club”.    In earlier segments of this blog, you can read more about Don’s antics.   Kids and many adults loved them.  Those kids now turned adults still do.   Next time I see Officer Don, I ‘ll ask him to bark for us again!  Thanks Ken for the memory.

Dick Tracy

August 22, 2011

Warren Beatty directed and starred in the 1990 movie, “Dick Tracy”.  I watched it Sunday evening on an HD television screen.  The movie is set in the imagination of  Tracy’s creator, Chester Gould.    When I was growing up in East Tennessee, I spent untold dimes for comic books.  Dick Tracy was one of my favorites.  I had stacks and stacks of the ten-cent tales that were perhaps children’s favorite form of escapism…some adults too.   Stacked in my closet and under the steps of the stairs leading to the basement, they were my treasure.  There came a time when Mom wanted to know what I was going to do with them.   I had no answer except the feeling that one day they would be valuable.  But we needed the space for more immediate things.  So one day, my beloved comics went into our coal-fired furnace.  I went into the military, then college and the beginning of a broadcasting career.  My feelings that the comic books would become valuable have come true, but only for those who saved them.  Still the movies such as “Superman”, “Batman” and “Dick Tracy” reawaken those memories from so long ago.