Publicity notes.

The other day it occurred to me that in January, NN.C will mark its fifth anniversary. Perhaps it’s fitting, then, that the week brought two experiences that are…not commonplace, but at least not jaw-dropping, not anymore:

1) I was interviewed by Lisa Belkin, a New York Times reporter who hosts a radio show, “Life’s Work.” Topic: “Living online.” Of course I sounded like a moron, but the results air Sunday at 11 a.m. on XM channel 155, if you have it. And,

2) Yet another stranger e-mailed to ask if I could provide the complete lyrics to “The Ballad of the Big O,” the song Lawson’s dairy stores used in the 1960s, to advertise its super-fresh orange juice. Of course I forget the first verse — my friend Jones knows — but I do know the second:

One man sleeps while the other man drives,
on the non-stop Lawson’s run
and the cold, cold juice
in the tank-truck caboose,
stays as fresh as the Florida sun.

I remember when I first went online in 1994 (or was it ’93), I exchanged an e-mail or two with Warren Zevon. “Isn’t the internet wonderful?” a friend wrote. “Everyone gets to talk to everyone.” Yes, it is.

Speaking of radio: I keep forgetting to mention the great, great “Fresh Air” that was on Tuesday, an interview with Bruce Springsteen that you should listen to, if only to hear the alternate mix of “Born to Run” featuring the glockenspiel and chick singers doing backup. I almost ran off the road.

And at the other end of the spectrum was My Lobotomy on NPR, a truly heartbreaking bit of reporting by Howard Dully, who received a transorbital lobotomy at age 12, thanks to a vindictive stepmother. It’s the sort of thing that, for me, makes me reach for my checkbook during pledge week, the reason NPR is a news source like no other. Having just dozed through an hour, a solid HOUR, of “Primetime” examining the very important case of Anna Nicole Smith’s right to her late husband’s estate, I know what I’m talking about.

If you don’t have time to listen to the piece, the NPR link gives you a good sense of it.

And the picture of the author with icepicks sticking out of his eye sockets isn’t as horrible as you might expect, but it’s pretty awful.

With that: Have a nice weekend.

Posted at 11:47 pm in Uncategorized |

18 responses to “Publicity notes.”

  1. mary said on November 18, 2005 at 12:02 am

    I listened to the My Lobotomy story twice. It makes all the Susan Stamberg smugness fade away, doesn’t it?

    I have a right wing brother who gets his news from Fox. I recommended NPR to him once, and he said that the one time he listened to NPR, they had a ten minute story about fetal alcohol syndrome among Native Americans. You call that news?

    That lobotomy story, that was news. That was amazing.

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  2. Dorothy said on November 18, 2005 at 8:04 am

    I read a story about the man who got the lobotomy in (of all places) People magazine during the drive back from Pittsburgh two weeks ago. I needed some drivel to read for a break from crocheting, hence the compulsion to buy People. And Ellen DeGeneres was on the cover, so I was able to justify it.

    It was an amazing story, I agree. And oddly enough, during that trip I also had on a radio station that was running a Sprinsteen interview. Could it have been the same one? This was on Monday Nov. 7th. It was all about Born to Run, and they played some rejected versions of some of the songs. Pretty neat stuff.

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  3. colleen said on November 18, 2005 at 8:18 am

    The lobotomy guy was also on Talk of the Nation Thursday afternoon. I agree….very compelling stuff. The ATC story actually broke format and ran nearly 20 minutes.

    Also agree about the Springsteen interview…I’m not even a huge Bruce fan, but found myself drawn to the radio while the interview was on. (And since I work at the NPR affiliate, I normally only pay close attention when the sound goes AWAY)

    Speaking of Stamberg, I think this morning was the cranberries…..

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  4. basset said on November 18, 2005 at 9:19 am



    I’ll say again… if Bob Seger had been from New Jersey and Springsteen from Michigan, their media coverage would have been exactly reversed and we’d be hearing Seger on NPR now.

    just getting “Back in ’72” out on CD would be progress enough, though.

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  5. Lisa Belkin said on November 18, 2005 at 11:43 am

    You did not sound like a moron! You sounded like a smart, funny super woman. Thanks for taking the time…


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  6. mary said on November 18, 2005 at 1:35 pm


    I respect that opinion, but I really don’t think musicians from Michigan are overlooked. Do you think Madonna doesn’t get enough attention? How about all of Motown?

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  7. Laura said on November 18, 2005 at 2:13 pm

    Besides, Bob Seger kinda sucks.

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  8. Dorothy said on November 18, 2005 at 3:37 pm

    Seger can’t hold a candle to Bruce, sorry.

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  9. brian stouder said on November 18, 2005 at 3:50 pm

    Pearl Jam, baby!

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  10. Nance said on November 18, 2005 at 4:07 pm

    I agree with everyone — Bruce is overrated and better than Seger. By a mile. But the glockenspiel-and-chick-singers “Born to Run” is still a scream.

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  11. B-Rad Gluckman said on November 18, 2005 at 5:01 pm

    Mellencamp’s better than both Springsteen *and* Seeger. But Bruce gets all the love ’cause he’s an East Coast guy. Ah well, history has a way of correcting these parochial critical judgements.

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  12. mary said on November 18, 2005 at 6:07 pm


    I’ve never been able to get beyond Mellencamp originally using the name “Johnny Cougar.” Sorry. I hold grudges against lameness.

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  13. Laura said on November 18, 2005 at 8:13 pm


    The record company forced his hand; he hated the faux name.

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  14. brian stouder said on November 18, 2005 at 11:36 pm

    Eddie Vedder is it.

    Mellencamp is pretty good though, if you catch his act at Deer Creek in July.

    Nothing like hearing Little Pink Houses in an open air theater amidst an Indian cornfield

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  15. brian stouder said on November 18, 2005 at 11:37 pm

    make that ‘Indiana cornfield”

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  16. basset said on November 19, 2005 at 4:01 pm

    I just never got the point of Springsteen… Seger, on the other hand, speaks to me. Mellencamp I remember when he was still playing the Bluebird in Bloomington, and there should be a statue of him on the courthouse square in recognition of the “Scarecrow” album alone.

    my opinion of Springsteen’s music, I’ll admit, is based on that “Born to Run” period when you pretty much couldn’t avoid hearing him every time you left the house. Seemed to me at the time, and still does, that the wall-of-sound approach had already been done, his singing was monstrously over-emoted, and the lyrics, what I could make out of them, just didn’t say anything to me. New Jersey accents bother me too, not as much as New York but they’re still bad enough.

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  17. mary said on November 21, 2005 at 11:45 am


    It was a very hateable name.

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  18. B-Rad Gluckman said on November 21, 2005 at 4:00 pm

    Yes, “Johnny Cougar” was a very hateable name, foisted on Mellencamp by music industry “geniuses”. As soon as Mellencamp had a hit record (and the clout that came with it) he transitioned back to his real name, the name he wanted to use all along.

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