Friday, November 24, 2017

Black Friday

Today is one of my least favorite days on the calendar, Black Friday.  It's a day dedicated to commercialism, excessiveness, crowds, noise and mayhem.  As a leftover from Thanksgiving, I'm thankful I have nothing to do with it.

I do understand that, despite what the politicians and chamber of commerce types tell us, times are tough.  It's difficult to make ends meet, and some of us will have to battle the mess today to save a few dollars.  I get that.

I also realize that many use Black Friday as family time.  The family that shops together, stays together.  Bravo on that!  Any family time is good time.

My retail experience today will consist of an early morning trip to a mini mart for an out of town newspaper.  That's it.  That's the list.

Please, try to be safe and sane today.  We'll talk tomorrow.

Thursday, November 23, 2017

Happy Thanksgiving!

I say it every year.  If you look hard enough, we all have something for which to be thankful.  Some years, it's more difficult than others, and this is one of those years.

However, when you sit down and think about it, I'm a fortunate man.

There are a lot of people out there struggling, and those struggles are very real.  My heart breaks for them.  Thanksgiving is just another day.  It might even be worse.

Count your blessings.

If all goes according to plan, I'll try to get out with the camera for a little bit this morning, a Thanksgiving tradition.  Dinner follows.  Maybe some football on TV.  Thanksgiving is usually the time I start putting together my Top Ten Photographs of the year thing.  I'd make an overnight gym visit, but it's closed, not reopening until the morning.  A walk seems like a decent compromise.

I hope your Thanksgiving is a good one.  We'll talk soon.

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Follow Up Wednesday

CBS fired Charlie Rose yesterday, and I can't see how it had any other choice.  The allegations, which Rose copped to (for the most part) were exceptionally damaging.  There was no way CBS could put Rose back on the air.

It's a bad situation.  CBS has a decent morning show for the first time in years.  Ratings have been making progress, even though CBS is still in third in the morning, and the network failed to groom a successor.

Pity.  Rose's wounds were self inflicted.

Today is the biggest travel day of the year, and I am thankful I won't be traveling beyond the gym and the mini mart again this year.  Traffic is nuts on a normal day, and multiply that by five, at least, today.

I will renew my theory that most of life's problems can be solved by getting up ten minutes earlier.  I see so many maniacal drivers every day.  They're all in a hurry.  They wouldn't have to rush as much if they had a little more time in the morning.

Tooting our own horn for a second...  So many of us got into the news business because we want to help people.  WNEP and several of my coworkers have been doing stories on places people in need can find help during the holidays.  Still others at WNEP offer the knowledge via phone or email.  We try our best, and if you are in need of assistance, I sincerely hope you can find what you need to get by.

Tuesday, November 21, 2017


It's clear Minnesota Senator Al Franken has made some big mistakes, and he's paying the price.

Most people remember Franken from Saturday Night Live, but there's another project on the agenda today.  Franken starred in a 1998 NBC sitcom called "Lateline."  Franken played a reporter for a "Nightline" type broadcast.

I thought it was funny, and I might have been the only one.  It lasted all of 23 episodes.  Yes, they're on DVD, and yes, I have it.

On a similar note, I was always a big Charlie Rose fan, and the news last night hit me like a punch in the gut.  CBS suspended rose, pending the outcome of an investigation.  PBS stopped distributing his show.  Bloomberg will stop airing it.  Eight women came forward to say Rose sexually harassed them.  Rose issued a statement, admitting to much of it and apologizing.  The initial story was in the Washington Post.  The New York Times followed up.  It's devastating stuff.

Franken and Rose are cases where we are forced to say we like their work, even though they made some horrible choices

We're being forced to separate the personal and the professional.  It's easier said than done.  Most experts I heard last night and early this morning say comebacks after things like this are a major uphill battle.

Liking the work doesn't excuse the actions.

I'm not sure it's possible.    You can't ignore the behavior, or lessen its severity,  but if you believe in forgiveness and rehabilitation...

Monday, November 20, 2017

Joe Martin

Joseph Miluszusky died Friday morning.  Listeners to WCDL 1440 in Carbondale knew him as Joe Martin.  He was the morning man there for 20 years.

I first encountered Joe Martin back in the 70's when I was in high school.  Joe traveled from school to school, moderating a student quiz show, "Scholastic," that was recorded and played back on the weekend.  I wasn't involved in the show, but I watched with amazement as Joe set up what looked like archaic and bulky audio taping equipment.  I don't remember a word of the quiz or the broadcast.  It was the production and the equipment that fascinated me.  You know what followed.  I started in college radio just a few months after high school and professional radio followed in my college sophomore year.

I know I had my mind made up to become a broadcaster long before Joe Martin brought that stuff in to my school.  Watching that morning helped cement my choice.

It was apparent that Joe Martin was the right guy at the right time.  He worked in an era when radio was really local.  WCDL didn't have a great signal, and back then, it signed off at sundown.  It's now a whopping 37 watts at night.  WCDL was "THE" radio station of the Carbondale area, the up valley and the mid valley.  There was proof every day.  It was a good time for home town radio.  Local news, that show called "Scholastic," community events, and of course, plenty of sports.  WCDL was what a small town radio station was supposed to be.  Joe Martin was in the middle of it all.

I never really met Joe Martin.  I think I said hello briefly at the school that day.  I auditioned for a job at WCDL shortly after starting college. The news director handed me some wire copy to read and record.  Joe wasn't around that morning.  I didn't get the job.  I don't know who made the decision.  No hard feelings.  I wasn't ready.  I wouldn't have hired me, either.

Local radio was better because Joe Martin contributed to it.  My sympathy to family, friends, and fans.

Sunday, November 19, 2017

Andy's Angles: Leaves

As noted earlier, I didn't get much leaf peeping time in this year.  I tried to make up for it on a recent morning by taking some shots from the WNEP backyard.

The building in the middle is the Lackawanna County Visitors' Center.  That's a hotel off to the left.

It was a strange weather summer and fall, and the leaves didn't seem quite as colorful this year.  It was a pretty sight nonetheless.

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Andy's Angles: The Butterfly

There is a funny story behind this picture.  I was playing with my camera in my backyard a couple of months ago, trying to get a good butterfly shot.  I took several, not happy with anything, and I moved on to other things.

Then, I was loading pictures from another project in to my computer several weeks later, and I saw this on the monitor.  It wasn't half bad.  I didn't realize I had a pretty picture.

Enjoy a little taste of late summer, during a cold and grey November.

Friday, November 17, 2017

Friday Scrapple

Welcome to this blog's first entry of its 14th year.

Hawaii Five 0 might be the best TV theme ever, and there were some great ones back in the day.

A month ago, people were ready to hand the college national championship trophy to Penn State and the Super Bowl trophy to Kansas City.  Things have changed a bit.

Thanksgiving is less than one week away, and I'm not feeling it.

You can get a forecast from a dozen different places, but I still like listening to National Weather Service radio.

I've been spending much of my work days researching and writing some special projects.  The flood of memories crossing my computer screen still amazes me.

A great pizza makes life worth living.

It's silly, but flash drive technology still fascinates me.  So much data in such a small device.

Raw mushrooms in a salad are great, but once you cook them, I want no part of them.

Yesterday, I was in a supermarket that was selling hot turkey dinners for take out.  You would think, that with Thanksgiving a week away, people wouldn't want to look at turkey.  Yet, those hot turkey dinners were flying out the door.

Why did it take so long for people to get angry about the situation in the Scranton School District?

I am thankful for many of things, and one of the biggest is I don't have to travel next week.

Closing in on 2,100 Twitter followers.  Tell a friend.

Speaking of friends, "The Prospector" from Rock 107 is doing his annual thing and collecting food for people in need.  Help if you can.  I love to see radio stations out and helping in their communities.

Thursday, November 16, 2017


It's anniversary day.  This blog is 13 years old.

Our way back then webmaster Mark Sowers came up with the idea.  The rest was all on me, and  I don't think anyone ever expected it to last this long.  I think the reason I still blog is that I was late to the Facebook game, and Facebook really isn't my favorite social media platform.

This is my own little one page daily newspaper.

Some days are a struggle, but those are few and far between.  The blog is never a chore.  I've always enjoyed writing, even though I'll never be confused with Hemmingway.  I hope it's changed, but a lot of teachers back in my day used writing as a form of punishment.  That was criminal.  It could be why so many people hate it and have problems expressing themselves.

I'm estimating close to 5,000 blog entries.  There is no way to get an accurate number because we've changed input methods and platforms over the years.  That's a lot of entries.  A few were even entertaining.

Thank you for reading and looking at the pictures.

Year 14 begins tomorrow.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Follow the Money

GQ magazine named protesting and unemployed quarterback Colin Kaepernick its "Citizen of the Year."

It was all over radio, TV, and the internet yesterday.

Mission accomplished!

When was the last time anyone talked about GQ magazine?

The goal here was not information or presenting an interesting story.  It was heat.  Publicity.  Attention.  MONEY!

Every year, People magazine names its sexiest man alive.  Maxim used to rank the world's hottest women.  Magazines and newspapers list the best cities, the worst cities, the best colleges and universities, the worst colleges and universities, best food, worst food...  The list is endless.

My radio brethren love talking about the sexy lists, and that's great.  It makes for entertaining radio.

But, please don't take your eye off the ball when it comes to this stuff.  Don't take it so seriously because it's all about the money.