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Thursday, September 30, 2010

Outsourced

I rarely watch prime time television.  First, I'm usually asleep at the time.  Second, it just doesn't interest me.  Prime time is just a bunch of bad reality shows and it seems like there's a shooting, grisly murder, or an autopsy every five minutes on the rest of the offerings.  I can do without that.

However, I stumbled across something last week that I actually found amusing.  It's a new sitcom on NBC called "Outsourced."   It's about an American who runs a novelty company call center in India.

Outsourcing is really nothing funny, and we've seen far too much of it in real life.

As for the sitcom, the pilot was really good.  I hope the writers can make the rest of the episodes as humorous as the first.  It seems there's no shortage of comedy potential with the topic.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Everything Old is New Again

It seems like I've been overloading on train pictures and radio talk recently, and I apologize.  I'm trying to broaden my horizons, but I enjoy looking at trains and radio is my first love.

Indulge me, please, for another radio discussion. 

A company called TRN, which stands for Talk Radio Network will be offering hours of all news programming to stations around the country.  the head of the country says TRN will start with a single three hour block, then sxpand until they're up to 15 hours.

Sound familiar?

NBC Radio used to have something called NIS, the News and Information Service back in the 70's.  It was all news, all the time, with positions for local stations to do their thing.  You heard it in the Wilkes-Barre area on WBRE FM 98.5 and AM 1340.  NBC Radio eventually pulled the plug, but WBRE kept an all news format going for a while before the owner sold the stations.

Then, Associated Press Radio tried something similar to NIS.  I believe it had only one affiliate in our area, WKOK in Sunbury.  AP eventually gave up, saying the format cost too much and wasn't bringing in enough revenue.

I started in radio news.  It's a marvelous medium, and there isn't nearly enough news on local radio.

TRN hopes to provide its first news block in January, and I have a little hope of my own-- that someone around here decides to broadcast it.




Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Net Notes

It was a scary episode for this old blogger.

Blogger.com is out with a new template.  I was testing it Sunday afternoon.  There's one button to click for the test, then another to publish.  I hit the wrong button, and the template I wanted to merely test became mine.  It had potential, but I didn't like it.  The margins weren't right.  I couldn't get the header photo to center up.

Panic set in when I set out to change it back.  I couldn't find my old template.  Luckily, I found a Blogger.com forum and asked for advice.  A kind soul told me where to find the older templates, as the one I wanted, Minima Stretch made its debut four years ago.

As you can see, everything is back to normal.

I had the opportunity yesterday to test the WiFi system that now surrounds Courthouse Square in downtown Scranton.  I got a strong signal on North Washington Avenue.  I certainly hope so.  I was directly in front of the courthouse.  The bottom line-- solid, but slow.

Monday, September 27, 2010

The Stop Bar

A well intentioned PennDOT news release landed in my "in" box at work last week.  It was a request for us to remind you about the "stop bar."

The stop bar is a marking on the pavement, just before an intersection with a traffic light.  Beneath the stop bar is a sensor.  It lets the light know there's a car at the intersection, and it triggers the cycle.  If the sensor detects nothing, the lights stay red on one side and green on the other.

PennDOT wants to make sure drivers pull up far enough to land on the stop bar and the sensor beneath.  Otherwise, you could be waiting a long, long time for the light to turn if you happen to be on the "red" side.

I have a confession to make.  There are many times I stop well before the stop bar.  Here's why.  I grew weary of nearly having the nose of my car taken off by drivers who speed through intersections and make the turn at a considerably less than right angle.

Then, there are the trucks, too big to make a clean turn.  They too have nearly cost me my hood-- several times.

Don't tell me I can back up when a big truck approaches because the car behind me is usually right on my bumper.

There are two solutions-- teach people how to make a turn, or move the stop bars back, to a much safer distance.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Bad Photography Sunday

Today, two more examples of the passenger rail cars that call Honesdale home.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Bad Photography Saturday

I took this photo, and the one you'll see tomorrow, a month and a half ago.  I've been taking a lot of pictures lately, and this weekend's work got backed up in the queue. 

It's one of the passenger rail cars, stashed behind Main Street in Honesdale.  I'm sure there's a story as to how the "Copper King Express" made it here from Montana.  A Google search shows the tourist railroad went out of business earlier this year, and someone was apparently smart enough to bring a couple cars east to Honesdale.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Blockbusted

Blockbuster filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection yesterday.  Chapter 11 does not necessarily mean the chain's going out of business.  It's an opportunity to re-organize and shed some debt.

A key to this is Chapter 11 gives Blockbuster a chance to get out from under store leases.  Blockbuster currently has about 3,000 stores.  The New York Times reports that number will shrink to between 1,000 and 1,500 in the near future.  Chances are, that store near you won't be around much longer.

While it's sad to see any business struggle, you have to face the fact that Blockbuster has simply become obsolete.  You can get movies on line, in the mail, through cable or satellite, and from vending machines.  Blockbuster does have some vending machines, but it waited too long to get in the game.  Too little.  Too late.  Too bad for the people who work there.

I can't say I've ever been in one.  I'm not a renter of movies.

As we have seen in the past, the success rate for businesses that spent time in Chapter 11 isn't very good.  It will be interesting to see if the people in charge can change the company enough to compete with all the others in 2010 and beyond.

While all this new technology, and the speed at which it is emerging, is fascinating to those of us in the media, it's frightening at the same time.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

It's Going Around

It seems everyone has been sick, is sick, or is getting sick.  It's nothing major-- just the common cold.

I knew the outbreak was bad when I visited the "cough and cold" aisle at a local WalMart Friday morning.  It looked like a bomb had gone off.  Items were all over the place, and the popular over the counter remedies were gone.  I had to settle for the cherry NyQuil rather than the regular green kind  that I love so much.

It really was a waste of money.  Nothing works when I have a cold, even when I take a little more than the label recommends.

The only things that help me feel better when I have a cold are sleep and hot showers.  The reason for the sleep is obvious.  Hot, steamy showers loosen up the sinuses, and I'll stop there.  There's no reason to go in to the gory details.

If I could learn to sleep in a hot shower, the common cold wouldn't be a problem.

My cold has subsided.  I'm feeling much better now. 

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

A Not So Fond Farewell

There is something beautifully old fashioned about steel trussed bridges, and something about them that scares the heck out of me.

Above is the old 8th Street bridge between Wyoming and Jenkins Township in Luzerne County.  The photo was taken yesterday from the east side.  The old bridge is being replaced by a concrete one.  The yet-to-be completed bridge is hidden behind the red crane.

The 8th Street bridge must have been a masterpiece in its time, but it's also time to go.  It's narrow.  There's a weight limit.  It can't handle today's traffic.  It is rated as one of the worst in our area.  I can't say it was one of my favorites, even though it provides a great short cut between sides of the valley, even though it's a beautiful structure.  There was no room for error here.

The new bridge should be open late this year or early 2011.  I'm looking forward to it.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Six Weeks

The general election is six weeks from today.  Interest is huge, and even though it's said every election cycle, this year really could change the way things are done in this country.

The evidence is anecdotal, but here's some of what I've been hearing as I hit the streets for WNEP and do some general wandering on my own:  there's no one in the middle.  Candidates for most of the big offices are far to the right or far to the left.  That turns a lot of people off.  People/voters are frustrated because they feel no one is looking out for them.  Being average, being centrist, exhibiting some simple common sense isn't such a bad thing.

Polls show a lot of the races are tightening up, as is typical as we approach election day.

Do yourself a favor.  Do your town, county, state and country a favor.  Research the candidates.  There's a ton of information here on the internet.  Use a variety of sources to get an unbiased look at the way things stand.  You have six weeks.  That's plenty of time.

Then, vote November 2nd.

I'll see you at the polls.

Monday, September 20, 2010

It Was Nice While It Lasted

I really enjoy the music of the 60's and 70's.  I admit that freely, even though it really isn't fashionable.

Cool 92.1/100.1 FM had a button on my car radio.  Key word:  had.  The station flipped to a modern rock format on Thursday.  I'm sure there was some logic to the move, a belief by management this would bring in more listeners and revenue, that it would hurt some other stations in town.

I tried listening Friday morning.  I gave it a chance.  Sorry.  Modern rock isn't my thing.  You have to wonder how many stations aimed at young people can exist in this market.    I'm sure the new WFUZ is and will be a fine radio station.

I liked the Cool 92.1/100.1 music.  The personalities left a lot to be desired, especially the woman with the screechy voice and the brainless trivia questions in the morning.

There are other oldies stations in town.  I'll survive.   You know how radio is.  Now that there's one less oldies station around here, another may flip to fill the void.   There are so many programmers who spend more time worrying about the competition than keeping their own house in order, tightening the sound, promoting, developing personalities, becoming relevant to the community.

I think my next vehicle will have a satellite radio.

Good luck to the new 92.1, its staff, owners, and listeners.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Bad Photography Sunday

This is the Scranton Life building on a recent morning.  It's one of my favorites-- retail on the first floor, offices above, a great look.  It's one of five buildings that really dominate Courthouse Square.  Of course, the county and federal buildings are two.  The courthouse annex is three.  There's the Scranton Electric building on Linden St., and the one you see above on Spruce St.  Scranton is lucky to have such buildings of character downtown.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Bad Photography Saturday

Another church shot from Olyphant today...  This is Ss. Cyril and Methodius Ukranian Church on River Street.  This photo was taken from the rear because I wanted a shot of the gold domes shining in the mid day sun.


I've suggested good photography venues to you over the years, and Olyphant should be on your list.  There are interesting old buildings, a train station, a couple old railroad bridges, and tons of architecturally spectacular churches.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Railroad Bridge

I really need a life.

This is the railroad bridge over the Susquehanna River, just north of Pittston.  I was driving up Main St. on a recent morning, and the bridge in the early morning sunshine just jumped out at me.  There was one problem.  I didn't have my camera along for the ride.

I was off Saturday morning, and I drove back down to Pittston, hoping the sun was hitting the bridge just the way I saw it a few days earlier.  I got lucky, and there were a couple bonuses.  One is the upstream fog.  The other is the reflection in the still and shallow water.

Below is a wider view.
My vacation comes to an end tonight, so I thought a couple pleasant photos would be a nice way to ease back in to the routine.

See you tomorrow.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

It Looks Bigger On TV

I was doing some aimless wandering yesterday, when I decided to blow through Wilkes-Barre/Scranton International Airport.

This is the new control tower, under construction on the east side of the runway.

Yes, it's an impressive structure, but it's a lot shorter than I expected.  92 feet.  I guess that's high enough for controllers to see all the runways.  The current tower is only 42 feet, and it has an obstructed view thanks to the new terminal building.  It means one of the airport's runways can't be used because of the lack of visual contact.

Maybe it seems shorter because you can't get close to it for a really good look.

The new building will be ready next year.  For a while, the airport will have two functioning towers.  When officials decide all the bugs are worked out of the new one, the current tower, and the old terminal it sits upon, will be demolished.
I also have to note the passing of retired NBC News correspondent Edwin Newman.  He was one of those guys you could put anywhere.  Edwin Newman was the one who announced the death of President John Kennedy over NBC Radio.  There were dozens of high profile assignments over the decades Edwin Newman spent with NBC.

Once upon a time, in 1980, NBC jettisoned three game shows to make way for a morning show hosted by a then-relatively unknown comedian named David Letterman.  NBC made space in the live broadcasts for news updates, anchored by Edwin Newman.  He even had a little desk next to Dave's.  Something unusual happened.  Letterman would introduce Newman, who would receive a hearty round of applause from the audience.  You could see Newman was pleased with the recognition, yet uncomfortable at the same time.

Newman would deliver a few headlines, then chat with Letterman for a bit.  Letterman would be his witty self.  Newman would often be wittier.  He had a dry sense of humor, and he didn't take himself too seriously.  The Letterman/Newman banter was among the highlights of the short-lived morning show.

Eventually, NBC thought the "Newman in the studio with Letterman" thing didn't work.  The updates were moved to the NBC newsroom.  Letterman would toss to Newman, who would appear in a monitor.  The audio guy would quickly kill the studio microphones so you didn't hear the applause for Edwin Newman.

A lot of people are applauding the life and career of Edwin Newman today.  He was 91.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Ebert Update

A few weeks ago, I wrote about the death of a syndicated movie review television show called "At the Movies."  It's the one started by Gene Siskel and Roger Ebert thirty years ago.  There have been several host/reviewers over the years.

Siskel passed away.  Cancer robbed Ebert of his ability to speak.  Ebert was determined to find a place on television for serious movie reviews, and it looks like he's found one.


"Roger Ebert presents At the Movies" will be offered to public television stations in January.  You can read all the details at Ebert's web site.

I've always been an Ebert fan.  He can review a film on two levels-- for the ultra serious movie buff, and for the average film goer, and he can make it relevant to both.  On top of that, he's an excellent writer, which you'll see when you visit the web site.

Thumbs up!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Reagan and the Yankees

The New York Yankees, and the company that manages the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees held a major news conference Friday afternoon.

The big Yankees and Mandalay both said they are committed to staying in Northeastern Pennsylvania.

That's all well and good.

A wise public relations professor at Marywood College once taught me "It's not what you say.  It's what you do."  So far, Mandalay hasn't done much to inspire public trust.  The company's mis-steps have been noted here and in other places.  Proof is the dismal and embarrassing attendance numbers coming from the stadium in Moosic.

By the way, attendance at Saturday's playoff game was 1,448.  There were high school football teams that drew bigger crowds.  That's sad, and it makes me wonder if people around here really want minor league baseball.  There's considerable evidence to suggest very few tears would be shed if baseball went bye-bye.

At times like this, I'm remnided of President Ronald Reagan.  He often used the phrase "trust, but verify" when talking nuclear arms controls with the Soviet Union.  Reagan wasn't the first to use the phrase, but he did make it famous.

If Mandalay and the NY Yankees are serious about making this work, negotiate an agreement we all can live with-- one that doesn't leave the taxpayers holding the bag, one that doesn't allow the Mandalay to move the team, one that protects all parties involved, one that inspires Mandalay to attract fans to the ballpark.

Trust, but verify.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Two Years

The second anniversary of Pennsylvania's ban on smoking in most indoor public places passed over the weekend.

The Harrisburg Patriot did a story last week, showing how the ban has NOT adversely affected business at bars and restaurants.  Get that one?  People are actually going out a little more because they're not subjected to second hand smoke.

So, it's time to take the next logical step.  Eliminate the exemptions the cowardly legislature included when the bill first passed.  Level the playing field.  Other states have done the same thing.  I checked the papers this morning.  There was no entertainment industry collapse in New York state, a place that banned public smoking long, long ago.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Bad Photography Sunday


Another one of my anti courthouse renovation rants is tempting here, but putting that aside for a moment, you can't dispute the fact that it's a beautiful building.  This is a recent early morning shot.                                    

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Bad Photography Saturday

Let me tell you something about Steamtown.  It doesn't change a lot.  Yet, I do visit frequently, just to wander and play with my camera.  I've seen all these trains before, but there are times when something catches my eye in a different way.

This is among my favorites there-- the black green, and gold of the Reading engines, 902 and 903.  Here they are, back to back, on a recent morning.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Norm

As many of you know, today is Norm Jones' last day at WNEP.

Now, for all to read, is the story that I constantly use to torture Norm.

I believe the year was 2001.  Our executive producer at the time was screening tapes of job candidates.  Yes, it was tapes back then.  Now, everything's on disc.  Anyway, I poked my head in the office to ask a question as Norm's tape was being played.  He was working at a station in Ohio at the time.  I paused for a few moments to watch.  I was impressed, and I told the executive producer that we should hire that guy.  We did.  I always remind Norm that he owes his job at WNEP to me.

Of course, part of that is bull.  Norm would have been hired anyway.  He was, and is, very good.  The rest of the story is true.

Norm is one of those guys you like to have around the office-- funny and calming when he needs to be, serious when the conditions warrant, professional all the time.

Norm, good luck down the road!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Media Notes

It's been a while since I inflicted one of these on you, so here goes...

ABC News president David Westin quit. He'll be gone by the end of the year.  There's talk Westin resigned rather than implement more budget cuts and layoffs.  ABC News is severely hampered by the lack of a cable network.  The owner, Disney, can create eight different ESPN channels, but not one for news.

How will the Westin years be remembered?   It's a mixed review.  He kept it all going.  On the other hand, Good Morning America was a disaster until Charlie Gibson and Diane Sawyer stepped into the picture.  A lot of people aren't sold on George Stephanopolous in the morning, and Christiane Amanpour on Sundays.   Westin provided leadership during Peter Jennings' illness, but many felt the pairing of Bob Woodruff and Elizabeth Vargas was a mistake.  We'll never know.  Woodruff got hurt in Iraq before the team got a chance to figure things out.  It will be interesting to see who ABC/Disney picks to fill the void.

Former radio talk show host Kevin Lynn is now writing a sports column for the Wilkes-Barre Times~Leader.  Quality stuff, but he should be commenting on news, not sports.  There's a serious gap when it comes to compelling newspaper columnists around here.  There are some good ones.  Not enough.

Former FOX Sports Radio morning host Steve Czaban began his new show on Sporting News Radio Tuesday morning.  It's good to have him back.  SNR streams, and has a Sirius channel.  No XM and no broadcast affiliate around here, and that's unfortunate.  After listening to the first couple days, it's clear the FOX Sports Radio managers, who made the decision to dump Czaban last year, are idiots.

I am so sick of Progressive and Geico insurance commercials.

I can't get enough of the Capital One Vikings.

FOX Sports is trying something different with its NFL coverage this year.  The network will have one of its studio analysts drop in on game coverage.  They'll do it from the Los Angeles broadcast center.  There's no "in between" here.  It will be either great, or awful.

Joe Theismann has signed on to do Thursday night games on the NFL Network.  I couldn't stand Theismann when he was on ESPN.  The man talks way too much.  He did some radio work after ESPN dumped him, and I've done a 180.

The Washington Nationals fired TV analyst Rob Dibble after he said something outrageously stupid about injured Nationals pitcher Stephen Strasburg.  It's funny.  The Nationals hired Dibble because he's outspoken.  He got fired for the same reason.

Sorry for the sports overload today.

John Kluge died Tuesday.  95.  Billionaire.  He built the Metromedia empire of television and radio stations, and billboards.  At one time, Metromedia was among broadcasting's elite.  Kluge sold off parts of the company over the years.  The TV stations were sold and became the foundation of the FOX network.

Frank Cady turned 95 yesterday.  He played Sam Drucker on Petticoat Junction, Green Acres, and the Beverly Hillbillies.

Tropical Storm Earl brushed the east coast a couple weeks ago, and it was another barrage of silly reporting, courtesy of The Weather Channel.

I know a lot of people don't like him, but listening to Brent Musberger do a football game is wonderful.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Amtrak



You knew I couldn't go more than a few days without a train picture.

My work schedule prevented me from attending RailFest 2010 at the Steamtown, but I did sneak down after work Monday morning, just after sunrise.

Luckily, one of my favorites was there, an Amtrak passenger train, led by a sleek GE engine.  It was likely manufactured in Erie, one of my favorite places.

The fact that we rarely see trains like this is sad in and of itself.  The Scranton/Wilkes-Barre area should have some passenger service.  I'm not sure that long, long proposed line from the Poconos to Hoboken is the answer.  Just do the math.  With all the stops it's supposed to make, it would take an eternity to reach your destination.

Be happy for what we have-- a yearly look at one of the gems of the transportation business.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Again

I know I've written about this before, but it's happening again.

I'm on vacation.  I've been looking forward to it for weeks, but any time I lock up my desk for several days, I don't want to go.  There's a lot going on out there.  I want to know what happened, and be part of the coverage.

It was an exceptionally busy weekend.  I want to know more about that homicide investigation and arrest in Wyoming County.  What caused that big Sunday morning fire in Conyngham?  It's after Labor Day and the election season is heating up.  There are questions that need to be asked.  The tropics are active.  Are there any storms heading this way?  It seems like we're over due for something to happen regarding all the local corruption investigations.

On the other hand, I'm kind of tired, and I need a little time to re-charge the battery.  I have no vacation plans, and it's likely I won't stray far from my mattress.

The blog will continue, and I'll be back to work on the night of the 17th.  I'm sure there will be enough to keep me busy upon my return.

Hope you had a great Labor Day weekend!

Monday, September 6, 2010

Guest Photography Labor Day

It's a holiday, so that presents a perfect opportunity for a little guest photography.

Today's submission comes from frequent contributor Phil Yacuboski-- a local boy now working at WBAL-TV in Baltimore.

Phil told me he's tired of my train photos, so he wanted me to show you this-- a great night time shot of the fountain in Bloomsburg.

Enjoy your Labor Day and the start of fall.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Bad Photography Sunday

This is another in the "Scranton Sunrise" collection, and another of my ill-fated attempts to be artsy.  It's the top of the Soldiers and Sailors Monument on the foreground, with the courthouse clock tower to the rear.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Bad Photography Saturday

The Susquehanna is a river of extremes.  We've seen it flood.  We've seen it so low that you can walk across.

It's a lot cleaner than it used to be, but there are still some issues.

However, you can't deny its beauty.  That's the Market Street Bridge, with Wilkes-Barre on the left, and Kingston on the right.

Friday, September 3, 2010

My Name is Earl

While knowing that there are people in harm's way is troubling, I have to admit that tracking a hurricane is interesting stuff.

There are frequent updates via internet.  There's a truckers' channel on my satellite radio.  It's fascinating hearing truckers call in to see how people are reacting to the approaching storm, how conditions are deteriorating, traffic, etc.

That brings us to television.  You know how I feel about those drama kings and queens on The Weather Channel.  I did sample the offerings of several Atlantic coast television stations that stream their newscasts.  The good ones are urgent without being alarmist.  They ran the spectrum yesterday.  Some stations are more promo than content.  They're out to frighten the viewers because they don't have anything of substance to say, and they're unable to put the approaching storm into context.  Luckily, Earl is far enough away that we haven't seen any of that "reporter standing in hurricane force winds" silliness.

It looks like we could get some rain from Earl.  We'll give you the information without the drama.

I have to admit that I was skeptical of last week's forecast saying a cold front would knock Earl out to sea, and our area would not be affected.   To be on the safe side, I got my boots out of the closet and stocked up on Pop Tarts.  I'm happy to say the boots have been returned to the closet, and the Pop Tarts will be nibbled away for weeks to come.  The forecasters got this one right.  Thank you.

While I'm on the subject of Earl, you can see reruns of the sitcom "My Name is Earl" in a few different places.  I manage to catch an episode during the afternoon of my days off.  The first couple seasons were outrageously funny, mostly thanks to the performance of Jaime Pressly, the woman who played Earl's ex-wife.

Unfortunately, a hurricane is no laughing matter.  Good luck to those affected by Earl.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

There Were Two Ways to Do This

Tuesday was the first day of the new school year at St. Rose Academy in Mayfield.

Let's get you up to speed on the goings on here.  The school humbly began five years ago, after the Catholic Diocese of Scranton closed Sacred Heart High School in Carbondale.

Enrollment never really took off.  St. Rose Academy bought a building it couldn't pay for.  The lender foreclosed.  We're told the school has a "verbal agreement" with the new owner, an owner that doesn't want the building.  Its lawyer said the company is in the money lending business, not the property ownership business.

Now, an administrator and some teachers are suing because they haven't been paid.

That leads us to Tuesday, the morning our crew was asked to leave the property.  There would be no access to students, parents, or teachers.

Instead of allowing us in to talk with people who believe in St. Rose Academy, the administration chose to go in the opposite direction.  That's okay.  This is America.  No one is forcing you to go on camera.  However, it would have been a perfect opportunity to say something like "in spite of our issues, we're still here, we like it here, and we'll weather this current storm."

Have it your way.  I wish you nothing but the best.  My experiences with St. Rose Academy have always been positive.

I understand some folks up there are peeved at us for exposing the school's financial difficulties and asking some tough questions.  There are two sides to everything.  "Two" is our theme of the day, and if you want some time to tell your story, I'm here.  I make no apologies for being tough, because I'm also fair.

By the way, I wasn't the reporter assigned to the story on Tuesday.

Shifting gears, President Obama gave an Oval Office speech Tuesday night, talking about the end to U.S. combat operations in Iraq.  Obama spoke.  He finished.  The network anchors plugged the web site and signed off seconds later.  ABC went to the brainless "Wipeout."  NBC dumped out to go to the equally as vapid "Minute to Win It."  Obama finished at about 8:20 PM.  Is ten minutes of analysis too much to ask for?  America could have waited a few minutes for Guy Fieri and John Henson.

There were two ways to do this-- the right way, and what we saw Tuesday evening on broadcast TV.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

About the Cover

As you can see, my fascination with steeples, cupolas, and clock towers continues.

While most schools and colleges began their new semester last month, I always consider September "THE" back-to-school month, which leads us to this month's blog header.

It's the cupola on top of the DeNike building at East Stroudsburg University.


Below are a couple paragraphs on the building that I found on an ESU web site.

About the DeNike Center for Human Services (32,630 sq. ft.)

This building was built in 1937 as a grade school laboratory building and is currently used as a classroom and office facility for the Nursing, Health, and Recreation departments. It has a concrete foundation, brick over block walls, a slate over wood roof and reinforced concrete floors. It is named for Howard DeNike, a member of the University faculty for nearly 40 years.

The building has undergone a capital renovation under the Jump Start Program and was re-dedicated in a May 23, 1998 program following graduation. It contains faculty offices, a number of classrooms including a "Smart" classroom, computer laboratory and updated equipment and air conditioning throughout. The Bureau of Historic Preservation of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania has determined that this building is eligible for listing in the National Register for Historic Places.