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mar 3rd 2009
Had loads of fun today on the catamaran cruise with the whole group. Drinking, snorkeling, watching listeners leap from the boat into the water, enjoying a couples' balloon-popping contest... loads of great stories.

Be sure to check out some of the photos from Day 4... and go to the videos page to check out video of the boat jumping and the balloon-popping winners!
posted by: Road Show at 12:00 am Comment On This Post

mar 1st 2009

Well, we all arrived yesterday without incident at the gorgeous Iberostar Tucan resort in the Riviera Maya in Mexico. The beach is incredible, the pool is huge, the drinks are flowing, and the weather is fantastic.

Looking forward to spending a little time on the beach this afternoon, then meeting up with all of the WAPL listeners that are along for the trip this evening during our welcome reception.

Tested all of our equipment yesterday afternoon, and everything ran smoothly. So we should be up and ready to go for our first broadcast on Monday morning with Rick and Len from 7-9am.
posted by: Road Show at 12:00 am Comment On This Post

feb 27th 2009

Having a rough time this week getting through everything that needs to be done before leaving for the WAPL International Incident. It's not just getting packed and prepping all of the station stuff for the broadcast, but it's putting together all the stuff that needs to run back home while I'm gone, and having everything done that's kicking off the week we get back. Plus, getting bills paid, running to the bank, making sure camera batteries are charged, memory cards are empty, iPod is properly stocked and charged, headphones are packed, DVR is set to record the proper programs while we're gone (and that there's enough memory to make sure everything gets recorded), returning phone calls, changing my outgoing voice mail at work, confirming prizes for WAPL's big spring promotion, yada yada yada...

It's enough to make someone need a vacation.
posted by: Road Show at 12:00 am Comment On This Post

feb 25th 2009
Andy's Back!

I've been following the NBC late night TV shifts with some curiosity. Leno's leaving The Tonight Show, Conan's taking over the Tonight Show, and Jimmy Fallon is taking over Late Night.

Leno's final The Tonight Show is on May 29th - not soon enough for me - after which he'll be moving to a 9pm prime time slot so NBC doesn't have to come up with any original programming anymore.

Frankly I saw this as the network spitting in the eye of O'Brien. "Hey, we're giving you the Tonight Show when Leno retires." And then in a Favre-like dick move... "Whoops, Leno's not exactly retiring - so we're still going to have him on before you every night... just earlier."

As for Fallon, he's a funny and creative guy. I liked a good portion of what he used to do on SNL. I'm just hoping that he's matured enough that he'll be able to go five minutes without losing it and laughing at his own jokes. We'll find out next week when he takes over Late Night.

As for Conan, I'm really looking forward to his new time slot when he starts up June 1, much in the way I was thrilled to see Letterman move up over a decade ago. And today I saw even better news: Andy Richter will be joining Conan as announcer for the show, much in the way he used to work on Conan's Late Night and probably a little of the Ed McMahon vibe from Carson's Tonight Show. Richter is hilarious and will definitely add to the show - I'm hoping they bring back the old staring contests.

For the last few years, I've had a solid late night schedule: Daily Show at 10. Colbert at 10:30 while flipping over to Letterman. Then Craig Ferguson's monologue, followed by the rest of Conan O'Brien. Now this will make it tougher for me to decide what to watch at 10:30... I still love Dave... but Conan with Andy is a powerful duo. And will Fallon have the chops to pull me away from Ferguson's brilliantly stream-of-consciousness monologues?

I'll definitely be staying up to find out.
posted by: Road Show at 12:00 am Comment On This Post

feb 20th 2009

Sammy Hagar's new Supergroup, "Chickenfoot," just released a new promotional clip... check it out.

The group is Hagar on guitar & vocals, ex-Van Halen bassist Michael Anthony, Red Hot Chili Peppers' drummer Chad Smith, and guitarist Joe Satriani. A new album is almost done and should be out this summer...

Get more on the story here...
posted by: Road Show at 12:00 am Comment On This Post

feb 18th 2009

God bless the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue. And God bless the internet that allows me to check out the pictures without having to subscribe to the magazine (especially since they don't give you that cool football phone with your subscription anymore).

This is Julie Henderson. And she's naked. Completely, utterly naked. Yet, here I am, able to not only look at her nude picture for free... but able to post it for you on Why? Because there's some paint over her nipples.

Which leads me to wonder... why are women's nipples taboo? It doesn't make any sense. Women's nipples are exactly the same as men's nipples... and we can show those off in public all the time. Advertising, TV and movies, on the beach, at Lambeau Field, wandering around in public, men can have our shirts off any time we want (although the lack of shirt or shoes may mean we are denied service at some stores and restaurants.)

Women on the other hand can't show their nipples. I'd maybe understand if it was the entire breast, but for some reason it's just the female nipple that some people find offensive. J-Lo with cleavage down to her belly button? No problem as long as the double-sided tape keeps the nipple covered. Breast augmentation surgery shown on E!'s Dr. 90210? It's ok as long as the nipples are blurred out. Madonna, Britney, and the rest want to wear next to nothing in every music video and on every tour? Fine... but when Janet Jackon's nipple appears for 2 seconds the world goes berzerk.

So my question is, if the rest of the breast is ok, why can't we free the nipple? I think it would make the world a better place.
posted by: Road Show at 12:00 am Comment On This Post

feb 18th 2009
Having dogs and cats is ok. Fish. Lizards. Hamsters. Fine. Chimpanzees? Unless you're Michael Jackson or you want to end up like this woman's friend... I'll stay away.

Get the full story here from CNN...
posted by: Road Show at 12:00 am Comment On This Post

feb 18th 2009
Check out six songs from the upcoming reissue of Pearl Jam's debut album, "Ten."

They include the new track "Brother" that you can hear on WAPL, plus a couple of live performances including two from their MTV Unplugged episode, and the re-mixed version of "Once."

Click here for the songs and more info on the re-release.
posted by: Road Show at 12:00 am Comment On This Post

feb 17th 2009

Here's another one that's been eating up the hours here at the office. Golf. Since winter will never end and it'll be a few months before we can get out to the golf course, why not try this golf challenge game? There are three 10-hole games to play: Longest Drive, Closest to the Pin, and Putting Challenge. Plus, as you play you get points to purchase better clubs, mulligans, etc.

Click here to start wasting time...

This is also available as an App in Facebook, so you can challenge your friends!
posted by: Road Show at 12:00 am Comment On This Post

feb 13th 2009
Someone has created a Van Halen (Diamond Dave Editon) version of the old Asteroids video game. It's pretty impressive.

Careful - some of the language on the site (and the web domain itself) may not be safe for work.

Click here to waste time...
posted by: Road Show at 12:00 am Comment On This Post

feb 13th 2009
i thought that was cute. very imaginative.
posted by: Road Show at 12:00 am Comment On This Post

feb 12th 2009
Videos like this one make me wonder...

If this was my kid would I be happy at their imagination? Or would I still be a little disturbed at where her mind goes when looking at some of the pictures?

"We're eating pepper and chips."
"I'm her mommy." "No she's not..."

This is the problem with YouTube (and also what makes it so great). You put something up that's probably just to share with a few family members, and it ends up being a subject of ridicule for people all around the world.
posted by: Road Show at 12:00 am Comment On This Post

feb 11th 2009
I don't see the problem, if they want to kill themselves for our entertainment, by all means, let them....natural selection
posted by: Road Show at 12:00 am Comment On This Post

feb 10th 2009

Is anyone genuinely shocked by this? Another big-hitting, superstar baseball player was on steroids. [Get ready for the sarcasm...] Wow, I'm flabbergasted.

Of course, while it doesn't surprise me at all, it does piss me off. A-Rod can sit there and talk about the incredible pressure he was under to perform, but that doesn't make it right. If I was under incredible pressure to pay my mortgage and feed my family, so I cut corners by robbing a bank or embezzling funds from where I work... they'd throw me in jail. And they'd be right to do so, because I would have broken the law.

So A-Rod admits he did something wrong, but that's it. People call him brave for stepping forward. B.S. I don't see him volunteering to be removed from consideration from the MLB Hall of Fame. I don't see him leaving baseball. I don't see him offering a refund to all the kids who bought his jersey. I don't see him returning the $22 Million he was making every year he admitted to taking steroids. I don't see him scaling back his current $275 Million contract.

No punishments are handed down, no real responsibility is taken, and everyone says, "Oh well. What are you going to do? I guess this is just a part of the game now."

Steroids are listed as a Schedule III drug under the Controlled Substances Act in the United States, and possession without a prescription can carry a penalty of up to three years in prison. I'm not saying we should throw half of MLB players in jail. But I'm sick of nothing happening at all. So here are a couple of ideas that I think might help curb the use of steroids in professional sports.

1. Constant testing by a third party. Don't let individual teams or even MLB police itself. They have a vested interest in making sure their superstars remain superstars, the game appears to be pure, and the fans keep filling seats and buying merchandise. Instead, you need an independent third party firm, not paid by MLB, to perform regular drug and steroid tests of all players.

2. Much larger penalties for players. Right now a player has to get caught four times before receiving a 1-year suspension. Isn't this baseball? Can't we get a three strikes and you're out rule? Nowhere in the rules will these guys get permanently banned from the game. Also, right now the first offense get you a 10-day suspension without pay. In a 162-game season that's about 6% of your annual salary. And sure $1.7 million might be a lot of money... but on A-Rod's $28M a year contract, it only means you might not be able to buy that fourth beach house you were looking at. How about putting a real dent in these massive salaries? Positive steroid test means you forfeit 25% of your contract for the year.

3. Penalize the teams! There are two reasons I don't drop F-bombs on the air, and both are the FCC. First off, I would receive a huge personal fine, and frankly I don't have the money to pay it. But what if I did? Maybe if I was as rich as Howard Stern (or Alex Rodriguez) and had the money, I wouldn't mind paying the fines in exchange for the freedom to swear over the airwaves. But this is where the FCC comes back into play - they would also drop a huge fine on WAPL. And while our company might have the money to pay a big fine... they frankly don't want to. It would get hard to explain to the rest of the staff that our facilites, equipment, benefits, and co-workers had to go away because Elwood wanted to say the F-word. So instead I'd be fired. And I'd find it very difficult to get another job in radio, because other companies don't want to hire a guy that is going to cost them a ton of money in FCC fines.

So, let MLB punish teams when their players are discovered in violation of league rules. Teams are businesses and they would definitely be better at self-policing behavior if they're going to lose revenue as a result of some jackass on the roster breaking rules. Teams would also have better judgement about signing players with a history of steroid use, for fear of future penalties.

Now these are definitely not the only solutions, but as far as I can see they'd be a good start to help bring back some respect to a game that doesn't seem to be doing much to improve its image ni the eyes of fans.
posted by: Road Show at 12:00 am Comment On This Post

feb 5th 2009
Last week was all about "Man" songs, so this week we're dedicating an hour to the ladies... all songs with Woman, Girl, etc. in the title.

Queensrÿche - Empire - Jet City Woman Queensryche - Jet City Woman
Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers - Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers - American Girl Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers - American Girl
Styx - Equinox - Suite Madame Blue Styx - Suite Madame Blue
The Jimi Hendrix Experience - Are You Experienced - Foxey Lady Jimi Hendrix Experience - Foxey Lady
The Doors - L.A. Woman - L.A. Woman The Doors - L.A. Woman
The Cult - Sonic Temple - Fire Woman The Cult - Fire Woman
The Guess Who - American Woman - American Woman The Guess Who - American Woman
AC/DC - Girls Got Rhythm
The Rolling Stones - Hot Rocks 1964-1971 - Honky Tonk Women The Rolling Stones - Honky Tonk Women
Mötley Crüe - Girls, Girls, Girls - Girls, Girls, Girls Motley Crue - Girls, Girls, Girls
Van Halen - Van Halen II - Beautiful Girls Van Halen - Beautiful Girls
posted by: Road Show at 12:00 am Comment On This Post

feb 2nd 2009
Maybe I'm looking back on the past with rose-colored glasses. Maybe I'm forgetting all the crappy ads that ran in past years. But didn't we get much better Super Bowl ads in the old days? Iconic ads like the Apple/MacIntosh "1984" ad, Mean Joe Green tossing the kid his jersey in exchange for a Coke, or the ad that launched Pepsi's new look/logo with Cindy Crawford? These were all iconic ads that often launched a company's entire ad campaign for the next year or longer. Even the Budweiser Frogs and the "Wassup!" guys - as annoying as they became - were fantastic ads when they launched.

But this year, as it's been for the last few years, I'm disappointed. A bunch of moderately entertaining ads. Some boring. One or two flashes of brilliance (check out the Career Builder ad for that). Actually you can check out all of the Super Bowl XLIII ads below and be disappointed for yourself.

But to give you something that's even worse than this year's lame crop Super Bowl ads, I've got a few of my favorite all-time local TV ads to share with you...

This Is It Furniture
These are some of the worst commercials ever. And I've loved them ever since I first saw them in college. They've been running these ads in Champaign, Illinois for at least a decade, and it's kinda depressing to have seen this guy drag his kids into the commercials to act as over the top as he does. He always shouts "Downer! Downer! Downer!" and you always get a free onion. Seriously - they have free onions for customers at the store. Don't ask me why.

Eagle Man Insurance
This is a great Chicagoland treasure from 1993. Possibly the worst commercial of all time - not just for the awful acting. Not just for the terrible 80's mall-hair on the girls. Not just for the guy in an eagle costume who looks like he's going to take a dump on the roof of the car. Somehow the sum of the ad is even more horrendous than its hilariously miserable parts.

More Bad Local Ads
If you enjoyed those, be sure to check out this guy's list of the 50 Greatest Local TV Commercials. Some truly great crap.

Europe Has It Right
I'll leave you by changing gears from bad ads to one good one. This commercial would never fly in the states, but it might just be one of the funniest and most effective messages you could come up with for the product.
posted by: Road Show at 12:00 am Comment On This Post

jan 29th 2009

Super Bowl Weekend is right around the corner, so to get us in that testosterone-fueled mood, today's Noon Lunch Whistle for Theme Thursday was all Man Songs... that would be songs with "man" in the title. Here's what you requested:

Van Halen - Van Halen - Ice Cream Man Van Halen - Ice Cream Man
Styx - Pieces of Eight - Blue Collar Man Styx - Blue Collar Man
Alice In Chains - Facelift - Man In the Box Alice In Chains - Man in the Box
Rush - Rush - Working Man Rush - Working Man
Rainbow - Ritchie Blackmore's Rainbow - Man On the Silver Mountain Rainbow - Man on the Silver Mountain
Soundgarden - Superunknown - Spoonman Soundgarden - Spoonman
Heart - Dreamboat Annie - Magic Man Heart - Magic Man
Metallica - Metallica - Enter Sandman Metallica - Enter Sandman
Lynyrd Skynyrd - Pronounced Leh-Nerd Skin-Nerd - Simple Man Lynyrd Skynyrd - Simple Man
posted by: Road Show at 12:00 am Comment On This Post

jan 28th 2009
Had an idea for another band name last night... Fistful of Crotch.

It would probably have to be a metal band. And with a name like that they'd probably have a hard time getting their albums carried in Wal-Mart stores.

But they'd be huge in Europe.
posted by: Road Show at 12:00 am Comment On This Post

jan 21st 2009
I need to thank my wife.

Today at work, we had a catered banquet to recognize service milestones (5, 10, 25 years, etc.) for several people in our radio group. It's something that happens every year, traditionally at our annual staff Holiday Party. This year however, like many companies across the country, our Holiday Party was canceled due to budget constraints in the tough economy. I understand. While a night of dinner and drinks with co-workers is nice, it's better to know that we work for a company that values keeping personnel over keeping parties when it comes to budget time.

In that spirit of valuing employees (or employee-owners as we're called in this ESOP company), it was decided that those celebrating service milestones should still be recognized during an in-office event. So at 11am, the announcement was made over the intercom system in our building that food was available in our conference room. The table had been made-over, with formal silver platters of hors d'oeuvres, warming dishes filled with stuffed portobello mushrooms, and at the end of the table, a gentleman sauteeing and serving sliced beef tenderloin. It was a complete transformation. As one co-worker put it, "Who's getting married in the conference room?"

So in addition to the amazing beef and the fantastic stuffed potato skins, I picked up a few small items of unknown content that had been wrapped in bacon and skewered with a toothpick. Turns out they are my new all-time favorite hors d'oeuvres: bacon-wrapped water chestnuts, and bacon-wrapped olives. Crispy, crunchy, juicy, uber-flavorful morsels of salty, bite-sized heaven. And as I was going back for seconds, I realized that ten years ago, I never would have tried them.

I used to be a picky eater. Some might say that I still am. It used to be that if a meal wasn't clearly defined as to what it was, what was in it, and if I knew that I liked it - I'd turn my nose up at it. Kraft Macaroni and Cheese. Chef Boyardee.

But having been with my wife for the past eight and a half years has definitely broadened my horizions. Knowing even before our first date that she was a vegetarian forced me to work outside my comfort zone. No easy steaks or burgers on the grill, no meatballs or ground beef in the spaghetti sauce, no hot dogs or Chicken Helper. I can still eat this stuff, but when I'm cooking for both of us I need to think outside the butcher's department.

The first time I cooked a meal for Sarah at my old apartment in Champaign, Illinois, during the summer of 2000, I found myself sauteeing portobello mushrooms for a pasta sauce. I don't know that I'd ever seen a portobello mushroom, let alone eaten or cooked one before. It was grand experimentation, tossing in whatever herbs and spices seemed to make sense from my meager spice rack. It worked well enough - she's still with me in 2009 anyway. And I discovered that my old repulsion toward mushrooms may have been misplaced.

Over the next couple years, more foods I never would have touched before started creeping into my diet. Broccoli. Pesto sauce on pasta. Hummus and pita chips. Indian food. Mediterranean tapas. I found myself watching Food Network with Sarah. Then No Reservations with Anthony Bourdain on Travel Channel. Then more recently Top Chef on Bravo, my mouth watering over dishes I've never had, prepared in ways I'd never imagined, with ingredients I've sometimes never heard of. And I want more.

So a thank you to my wife. Without whom, I'd probably still be passing over the bacon-wrapped water chestnuts, and maybe at best picking apart the bacon from the olive and brushing them off to eat separately.

Of course I can still always go for some mac & cheese.
posted by: Road Show at 12:00 am Comment On This Post

jan 14th 2009
Every once in a while I come up with great band names and album titles. I'm not in a band... at least right now. I do play drums, but haven't officially been in a band since 1998.

Over the years, I've come up with a few band names that I hold in reserve just in case I do end up forming another band some day...
Yesterday, Roxanne, John, and I were sitting in our shared office talking about the fact that Ross had come in early that morning to cover for Len who left early because he felt "pukey." I quickly recognized a new band name:

Feeling Pukey

Self-titled debut album, "Feeling Pukey," features on its cover what becomes the band's mascot, Pukey - a cartoon kid with a nauseous look on his face - being poked Pillsbury Doughboy-style by a huge finger. Plush "Pukey" dolls are huge sellers at our concerts. Our high-end t-shirts feature an embroidered Pukey character made of different materials - fleece, leather, faux fur,etc. - allowing fans to enjoy Feeling Pukey any time they want.
posted by: Road Show at 12:00 am Comment On This Post