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High fly into the stands

Saturday 6/13/20

Ran three miles yesterday. Wrote about half of this feature on The Twilight Zone episode "The Monsters Are Due on Maple Street." This was a pitch that went out. It's a good idea:


"The NBA and the NHL are adamant about wanting to complete their seasons, but it seems clear to me that those seasons do not exist anymore. Once you shut down for an extended period of time, it's not that season any longer. A season is what happens in a successive, gap-less period of time. That's why we'll see one NHL team, say, win the Cup in June, and then come the fall, they start out 3-10. It's not an extension. It's new.

"Players' bodies have changed in this interval. Their weight, their muscle. This is an off-season, not just a break. People have aged in legit ways. These re-started games are going to end up being played not that far off from when the next seasons would start. So just start next season. What is the problem? It is impossible for there to be 2019-20 champions already, because those seasons are over. You'd be giving out championships for this weird, interregnum thing. I think this time period has taught us that it's not a huge deal if there's not a champion for a given year. Stuff happened, life happened. Move on. It will practically be time to start up 2020-21 anyway."


This was another pitch. Just to give you an idea. I do this constantly. How many times a week? There are probably, on average, fifty ideas a week. Which I put together while doing all of the pieces (many of which you never see--and a lot of which you do, with the whole constant publication thing--because they don't make it to print, and I'm so prolific that I just keep doing them), writing the letters to people who hate me, writing books, writing fiction (I must be closing in on 200 new short stories since June 2018; I'll do a count before the month is over), doing this blog, reaching out to radio people, while watching people with no ability who write next to nothing be handed money and awards. That is how it works right now.


"We should do something on Chuck Berry's "Brown Eyed Handsome Man." Been listening to it a lot lately. I love Berry, so I'm always listening to him, but this was the ballsiest--especially for the time--Black Lives Matter protest song and it was from nearly sixty-five years ago. It's a history lesson, it's brave as can be, and it was counter to everything at the time. And as a piece of music--performance art--it just kicks ass. This band was a bad group of mf'ers. Berry sounds like Hendrix on this one, his pianist Johnnie Johnson might be the best pianist in rock and roll history. It's poetry, it's social commentary, it's an assertion that people won't be kept down. Berry was really more Dylan than Dylan was, if you know what I mean. It's because of his skin color that he doesn't get that due, but this was the music of societal change."


Ninety-five percent of these ideas--minimum--lead to nothing. It's unlikely I'll write pieces for the two ideas above. Wouldn't you like to see those pieces by me? There is a different tone with the second pitch because that is someone I do write for, off and on, and they do not hate me. I have no reason to think they they like me or my work that much--maybe they do--based on anything that has been said or conveyed. It's pretty business-like in an informal way. Every now and again they say yes, I write the thing, hand it in, up it goes, and I see it when everyone else sees it.


Another thing to think about with the re-started season thing--players who would not have been back from injury are back, and players with injuries don't have them. Again, not a continuation of a season. A new season. It is so dumb and forced to me that these leagues are clinging to these things that are already over and gone. I find it kind of pathetic, even. I do think the NHL set-up would be interesting, but I'd really rather not see it. Time and tide wait for no man. The time has passed here. Move forward.


Kyrie Irving wants the NBA season not to resume for a different reason, but Irving only and ever wants attention and will do anything to get it. As full-on a dog, a quitter, a narcissist, a team cancer I have ever seen in any professional sport. The Celtics have a chance to win now because he's gone. They wouldn't be one of the top four or so contenders if this thing starts up again with Irving.


I saw that the newly released ratings for WEEI were embarrassing, and 98.5 The Sports Hub destroyed them. You look at WEEI's mix of "talent," and it's these fossils like Glenn Ordway who was last relevant--insofar as he was--twenty years ago, and Dale Arnold--who is as uncompelling as a person can be on the radio--and then these stock, snark-driven Millennials, and it's like, maybe suck less? Maybe bring in talent? Maybe try something new, before you become a country station? I reached out to their program director, Joe Zarbrano, repeatedly. And this guy couldn't respond once. At what point is it not worth it for Entercom? You get your ass kicked by the other station, you are totally irrelevant, your brand means nothing, all you have is that Red Sox broadcasting deal (and people even in Boston increasingly dislike the Red Sox and what they think--rightly or wrongly--the ownership group stands for), the only people who might listen are people north of sixty-five who used to think the Whiner Line was funny in 1999 after four hours of beefy slobs talking over each other, and you can't even write me back? Not worth giving that guy a job? Not worth having them be a weekend host, see how that goes, how they perform? Dale freaking Arnold. Has anyone ever thought, "oh, it's Lou Merloni, I must tune in"? Is that even a possible thought for anyone? Rich Keefe? Seriously? Why? What is the point? What is he good at? What does he know? Mut Mutnansky? What is the draw? This station is awful now and has been for a long time. The ratings weren't like losing 5-3, it was like getting your ass handed to you 11-2. Obliterated.


A JazzTimes feature on Jimmy Cobb was supposed to have run this week and didn't. Not sure what is up with that.


I need to exercise. It's getting late this morning.