Five minutes with Nancy.

Sorry nothing new on the ol’ blog yesterday. I was knackered Monday night, and woke up Tuesday to discover the local homicide investigation had reached a higher gear. Alas, I had a full day at Real Work planned, and had barely arrived in Lansing when Alan called.

“A producer from Nancy Grace wants to talk to you about being on the show,” he said. Oh, wonderful.

I put it up for a vote in the office. The consensus was I needed to find out what the appearance fee was. My thinking was that I hadn’t washed my hair in two days, and there was no way I was TV-ready. But I have a weak spot for producers, who have to do the hard work of dialing for guests, and figured she was at least due a return call. I wondered if the producer was doing oppo research and had perhaps noted that I’d called her boss a “blonde harpy” at some point in the past. Or, if she’d simply searched the name, might have find that a certain commenter who goes by the name “caliban” had disparaged the blonde harpy about 10 million times. N.G. is really not my cup of tea, but I thought it might do GrossePointeToday.com some good, and what the hell? I called.

Nancy wanted me to do a phoner for about an hour, on “fear in the commmunity” after the murder. Hmm. I could probably do that. I might be on for a minute, no one would see my hair, and I could write while I was sitting on hold. Like a fool, I said OK, I’d do that.

“Let me talk to my boss,” the producer said. “We might be changing direction.”

Five minutes later, the direction had changed and no one cared about the community’s fear, because now it’s looking like the hubs is maybe just a little dirty. I said I understood, hung up and thought: whew. Tonight I watched the show and thought: Double whew. What a bunch of barking jerkoffs. Also: That is one super-soft lens they reserve for the star. Not since Liz Taylor’s “White Diamonds” ad have I seen one quite that forgiving.

It was a long day. When I got home there was a message on my home machine from CNN. Screw it. They nabbed the Patcher instead. Just as well. My hair is still dirty.

Fortunately, many linkies and much bloggage today:

We had a good Bridge yesterday. I especially liked this piece on “amenity-driven growth,” or Why Companies Keep Relocating to Chicago, Even Though the Taxes are High, aka (for you Fort Wayners) the Navistar Conundrum.

There was also a good two-story package on the (tentative) return of Michigan manufacturing, the overview and the detail piece, on a domestic ski maker.

Via Hank, a look at an all-white production of “Hairspray” in Plano, Texas. Wait, you’re thinking; isn’t “Hairspray” about white and black kids? How would you do that? With great defensiveness, it turns out:

Didn’t any black kids audition? No, said Rodenbaugh, it’s hard to recruit black kids to PCT because there aren’t that many in Plano. (African-Americans make up less than 8 percent of the Plano, Texas, population of 259,841, according to the most recent census numbers.)

So why do a show with black characters in it if you know going in that you won’t have any black kids to play them? Rodenbaugh had several answers about how much the kids wanted to do Hairspray, how they weren’t going to bow to “political correctness” and how “the parents expect this.”

Oh.

This is depressing. Pythons in the Everglades:

…In the southernmost part of the Florida Everglades, things have taken a really wild turn. Pythons and anacondas are eating everything. The most common animals in Everglades National Park — rabbits, raccoons, opposums and bobcats — are almost gone, according to a study released Monday.

The snakes are literally fighting with alligators to sit atop the swamp’s food chain. In October, a 16-foot python was found resting after devouring a deer.

Almost all the rabbits and raccoons, gone? How is that even possible?

Where is cable news on that one, anyway?

Posted at 12:19 am in Current events, Detroit life |
 

60 responses to “Five minutes with Nancy.”

  1. MarkH said on February 1, 2012 at 2:44 am

    Fear not, Nancy. They’ll be along any min….oh, wait. Here they are:

    http://video.foxnews.com/v/1425887793001/report-pythons-wiping-out-mammals-in-the-florida-everglades

  2. alex said on February 1, 2012 at 6:10 am

    See whatcha miss when you don’t watch Fox?

    Apropos de amenity-driven growth, Eli Lilly has been telling the Indiana legislature for years that one amenity it would like to see in this state is a less hostile cultural climate (i.e., back the fuck off of your gay marriage amendment and your creationism in the classroom bill because it’s a huge turn-off to employees of the caliber we’d like to attract and retain).

    Anacondas and pythons devouring everything else in the Everglades is spooky, but the same thing is happening in our midwestern waterways thanks to those giant flying Chinese carp that eat their weight in aquatic life every day. Looks like the rest of the animal kingdom is doing what humans have been doing for millennia: migrating to new continents and conquering and despoiling them.

    On that note, I raise my cup of coffee to Newt Gingrich, whose ego is bigger that the GOP’s big tent. Please continue to fight to the bitter end. You’ll be doing your country a greater service than you’ll ever know.

  3. Suzanne said on February 1, 2012 at 7:14 am

    Alex, surely Eli Lilly will see that with our new Right to Work legislation, businesses and their well educated workers will flock to the state! Maybe we can use that $300 million that the state just found to build a creation museum in Indy that all those kids attending religious schools on vouchers can visit on field trips, thus bringing revenue to the Circle City, since that is the only place in the state anybody cares about anyway.

  4. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on February 1, 2012 at 7:18 am

    I’m sure someone knows an exception to this, but while I’m not phobic about snakes & large reptiles other than a simple respect in their presence (been bit, don’t want to be bit again), my experiences with people who simply *must* have their own pythons and boas and large (Komodo dragon sized iguanas, etc.) are scary. The people, I mean. There’s a creepy sexual undert. . . ok, overtone to their every statement about their scaly pride, and it’s dreadfully often seen in homes where there’s both a lack of resources and a surplus of kids.

    Likewise, we have people willing, as Nancy said in her GPT column, to sign their names to rants about how the Columbus Zoo should be held liable for the recent death of one of the six large animals they no doubt ruefully took in out of Zanesville. The law enforcement folks shot 50, and the five or six slowest moving, least threatening creatures were confined, and then had to be cared for. The Columbus Zoo may take public money, but I think they could understandably had said “we have neither the facilities nor the staff to add these poor creatures to our care” in which case they probably would have been euthanized (no, these would just have been shot, but never mind), which surely played into why the zoo took them in.

    But one dies in their care and there’s a chorus around the state of these folks agitating for the civil right to own and keep exotic large mammals on your personal property, with (I think) a blithe disregard for the fact that when most of them open their mouths on camera, there’s a few more of us voters who find that we actually want more government regulation of private obsessions when they involve large creatures on small parcels.

    If for no other reason: they keep getting out. And not infrequently, because their ne’er-do-well owners are releasing them into “The Wild” they’ve so fetishized, when reality presses up against their creepy control issues.

  5. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on February 1, 2012 at 7:22 am

    (And yes, most of these folk couldn’t handle one night out in the actual wilds even with 24 hours notice and a gift card from Cabela’s. “The Wild” is a stance, an icon, a riff, and while it’s a fetish with them, their knowledge of it usually isn’t even up to PBS nature special levels.)

  6. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on February 1, 2012 at 8:08 am

    And by the way, this being one of our comment thread’s running topics, I’ve got to post this before staff meeting: http://www.slate.com/articles/health_and_science/medical_examiner/2012/01/american_health_care_is_already_socialized_.html

    My friend who runs our county free clinic here in Licking County, Ohio and I are carrying on a conversation about this on my FB page, but the gist of it is that we’re swimming in people who simply can’t get a full-time job and they can’t get health care insurance because it keeps employers from offering full-time jobs since those generally have to carry HCI which they don’t want to offer because the cost of that is less than the institutional cost of having multiple part-timers come and go but who don’t get HCI who then need clinic care because even though they’re working multiple part-time jobs they can’t find a job with HCI so they keep chasing what work there is that doesn’t have HCI but at least is a paycheck until . . .

    So we have hundreds of people with $12 to $30K per annum income with three to six W-2s, no HCI, no way to purchase it, and they’re 40 to 65. Add in a hefty subset who are intentionally staying under the radar because of unpaid child support — which means they don’t file for CHIP or EITC for their current partner & kids for fear of heaven earth, and the ex coming down on them for the $18K they owe in Florida and Tennessee — and you have a problem that is, I regret to say, insoluble through market-based solutions.

    I know, I know, now I have to mail in my Milton Friedman fan club card. Somebody loan me a stamp.

  7. beb said on February 1, 2012 at 8:09 am

    So “Five Minutes with Nancy” meant the other Nancy. Personally the reputation of Nancy Grace is so bad that I would never consider appearing on the show or even contributing to it. No matter how generous the pay was. If Santorium refers to a forthy mixture, then Nancy Grace is the collection of bugs found under a rock.

    Pythons in the Everglades has been around for several years. The only reason it popped up this week is the new survey that found so few small mammals in the swamp. Maybe if we made python skin purses a social cachetv we could deal with this problem through overhunting.

  8. nancy said on February 1, 2012 at 8:22 am

    The show really is astonishing. Endless repetition and shouting by the guests, all of whom seem to be performing for their own reasons. It puts you in mind of a sort of court intrigue, with Nancy the soft-lens queen and everyone else, her courtiers.

  9. basset said on February 1, 2012 at 8:29 am

    Meanwhile… getting away from bugs, snakes, and harpies for a minute… Mrs. B. and I were down in Alabama this past weekend and I had to visit the Muscle Shoals Sound studio, even if it was a Sunday morning and we couldn’t have gotten in no matter what day it had been. Raggedy little cinderblock building on a commercial highway in Sheffield, Alabama, doesn’t look like much of anything but the Rolling Stones cut “Brown Sugar” and “Wild Horses” there, Aretha Franklin recorded there, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Bob Seger, Percy Sledge, many more.

    I was just barely, however, aware of this:

    http://www.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/8/8b/3614-jackson-highway.jpg/220px-3614-jackson-highway.jpg&imgrefurl=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/3614_Jackson_Highway&h=216&w=220&sz=28&tbnid=hE4veX3xhYZSQM:&tbnh=85&tbnw=87&prev=/search%3Fq%3D3614%2BJackson%2BHighway%26tbm%3Disch%26tbo%3Du&zoom=1&q=3614+Jackson+Highway&docid=Q3ZYIizOwZ33BM&sa=X&ei=SzwpT-3UNaa22gWf1NjWAg&ved=0CFEQ9QEwAw&sei=VjwpT_bqAoH5ggf4gJniBA&gbv=2

  10. alex said on February 1, 2012 at 8:34 am

    Python-skin purses, hmmm. Let’s get Vera Bradley on it and bring more jobs to Florida and Indiana. Imagine gingham-print snakeskin handbags marketed as a “green” product. The brand could expand its popularity beyond conservative midwestern women whose fashion sense is ten years behind the times.

  11. anon for the day said on February 1, 2012 at 8:54 am

    This year our group health premium went up to 10K. That’s for two people, with okay but not generous coverage, some dental, and almost no vision benefit. We are healthy with the normal complaints of our age, and that’s our problem. There’s a huge jump when you reach 55. If I think about it very long I start to despair.

  12. Dexter said on February 1, 2012 at 10:01 am

    I have a friend who keeps saying the preservation of snakes is all-important, and he loves these pythons and abhors their killing…well, I told him last night to get a grip, these horrible pythons and even the anacondas are a major threat to the ecosystem and they are summarily executed as soon as they are caught…what the hell else they gonna do with them?
    It’s been a few years now and the problem is obviously getting worse. They are such good hiders there is no way to put a bounty on them and eradicate them. Is it impossible? Seems to be. I seem to recall that the New Yorker story of about three years ago reported that the snakes are on the march northward, they are all over Tampa, moving north still more. God damn. I hate all snakes, and to see that one motherfucker draped all over that alligator is sickening.

  13. peter said on February 1, 2012 at 10:15 am

    Perhaps Nancy (Grace, not Nall) can tie in the Everglades pythons when she does one of her follow ups on Casey Anthony, and maybe she can be snake bait. That’s a win-win!

    Sorry for bringing up an old subject, but I’ve been out of it lately: is it just me, or does Demi Moore look a lot like Iggy Pop? Now THAT would be an interesting couple. I’d pay good money to hear them sing “Success”.

  14. Bitter Scribe said on February 1, 2012 at 10:16 am

    I wanted to give those “Hairspray” folks the benefit of the doubt, but I gave up when I got to the part about how this drama school, or whatever it is, charges parents $250 a pop for the privilege of seeing the little darlings in a show with recorded music and no production values. Sounds like an elaborate version of those “modeling portfolio” scams.

  15. Deborah said on February 1, 2012 at 10:54 am

    I dunno, if Nancy Grace wanted me to be on her show I think I’d do it just for the heck of it. She probably wouldn’t let you get a word in anyway. It’d be a great story at parties.

    Jeff (tmmo), it’s probably time to return your Republican card too.

    A few years back, visiting the floating market in Bangkok, getting off the boat some people ran up to me and put a giant live snake around my neck and offered to take my picture. For about a second I was horrified but then I noticed how amazingly beautiful the snake was and I calmed down. The architects I was with all took pictures of the event and I have a number of great photos.

  16. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on February 1, 2012 at 10:56 am

    You can have my GOP registration when you pry it from my cold, dead fingers. ;-)

  17. coozledad said on February 1, 2012 at 11:10 am

    Peter: It would be even better if Mitt Romney’s mid-life crisis metastasized into an Iggy Pop fixation and he started performing a patriotic medley shirtless and covered in peanut butter.

    There’d be a brokered convention,for one thing.

  18. caliban said on February 1, 2012 at 11:25 am

    Chain of Fools (modified from a Gospel standard to the furthest thing from it by Don Covay) was recorded at Muscle Shoals, with the great Joe South playing that indelible opening guitar riff with the extreme vibrato:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PK155B24Mqc&feature=related

    And Sweet Home has the lines: Now Muscle Shoals has got the Swampers/And they’ve been known to pick a song or two.

    If people want to keep pythons for pets, the snakes should be registered with a tat, the Owners should have background checks, and the owners should face immense fines should the snakes be captured in the wild. And how about python skin boots rather than purses? There is always the danger of a Bhromodrosis epidemic:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D9FBQ1O5F8k

    For years I thought Zappa was singing Dromodrosis, and just making up stuff to mock maladies created for advertising campaigns. With the internet, I know there are people selling stinkfoot as a tragic disease affecting millions.

    My comments on N. Grace may seem extreme or vituperative, but there is really no excuse for that woman’s public existence. And while Harpy fits well (avenging monsters dispatched by the fates in Greek mythology) I still say snakes writhe on her scalp and her gaze could turn you to stone. This woman’s behavior in the cases of Elizabeth Smart’s abduction (particularly her badgering, adversarial treatment of the victim), Melinda Duckett’s missing son and suicide, and the alleged sexual misconduct by the Duke lacrosse team make it clear that “presumption of innocence” doesn’t mean a damn thing to this shrieking Gorgon. She is a vile, self-aggrandizing demagogue, and her entire backstory about being a victim of violent crime is rife with rank fabrication and dissembling. Her prosecutorial record is rife with misconduct, including subborning false testimony from law officers. Grace’s preferred justic system would be all Nancy all the time as judge, jury and executioner. I really wish she would get caught committing a crime. If I got a chance to be on that show, we’d see how quick her studio crew is on the delay/bleep button before I could get in the C word. She is reprehensible.

    Are those Hairspray numbnuts planning on blackface. I know the story only vaguely, but isn’t it’s main point something about integration?

  19. Little Bird said on February 1, 2012 at 11:37 am

    I knew I shouldn’t have clicked, but I did. I will have gator/snake nightmares for a week! If someone put a snake on me, or even anywhere remotely near me, I would pass out.

  20. EllenT said on February 1, 2012 at 11:45 am

    Texas has all kinds of crazy state laws based on religious fundamentalism that don’t seem to be hindering economic growth.

  21. caliban said on February 1, 2012 at 11:53 am

    The true story of the murderof Nancy Grace’s fiance, along with her bogus version:

    http://www.dailykos.com/story/2006/03/01/190914/-Nancy-Grace-Pulls-a-James-Frey

    Outfit Nancy Grace at Abercrombie & Fitch and drop her in the Glades. Lets see a snake swallow that whole. Actually, I read that a 20 ft. anaconda was captured and found to have swallowed a gator. Now, that is unnerving news.

    And I imagine Grace was a sorrority sister, so I have my doubts about the whole “fiance” bidness. Never knew a Tri-Delt that didn’t have one, or, anyway, two or three per month. No offense to anybody of the Greek persuasion.

    Romney singing America the Beautiful made me think immediately of Ed Muskie, Hunter Thompson, and ibogaine. Favorite verse:

    O beautiful for pilgrim feet
    Whose stern impassion’d stress
    A thoroughfare for freedom beat
    Across the wilderness

    Except for those folks that were already living there. Maybe he should try Woody, and include the last two verses:

    As I was walkin’ – I saw a sign there
    And that sign said – no tress passin’
    But on the other side …. it didn’t say nothin!
    Now that side was made for you and me!

    In the squares of the city – In the shadow of the steeple
    Near the relief office – I see my people
    And some are grumblin’ and some are wonderin’
    If this land’s still made for you and me.

  22. basset said on February 1, 2012 at 11:56 am

    Thanks, Caliban, for the response. I seem to get them only rarely, dunno why.

    Our invasive animal here in Middle Tennessee is the armadillo. Nasty things.

  23. beb said on February 1, 2012 at 12:08 pm

    The python exploded after swallowing the gator. It wasn’t a good career choice for either.

  24. caliban said on February 1, 2012 at 12:17 pm

    Texas also has no laws preventing Gov. Perry from practicing the sort of slush fund crony capitalism that is rightly illegal everywhere civilized.

    Perry brings jobs to Tejas using the Idi Amin model.. Amazing what people will overlook when there’s cash on (under) the table.

    Possums on the halfshell, basset. On the interstate, it looks like many more big rigs are blowing out retreads, with all the dead dillos. I’ve always found them kind of humorous, like a Transformers version of roly-poly bugs. The python story makes me wonder about what in the world is the natural enemy/predator that keeps the population steady in their natural habitats. Hogs are great natural snake killers, but I don’t know about huge constrictors. The problem with the big snakes and gators is that the snakes will locate gator nests and eat the eggs. It’s difficult to imagine a mature gator succumbing to constriction. I’ve seen them hit in the head with sledge hammers and remain unfazed.

  25. brian stouder said on February 1, 2012 at 12:22 pm

    It would be even better if Mitt Romney’s mid-life crisis metastasized into an Iggy Pop fixation and he started performing a patriotic medley shirtless and covered in peanut butter.

    I think that his campaign advisors would, in order to keep their boot on Gingerich’s neck, tell him to smear Nutella all over his manly chest.

    And Basset – I thought of you just the other day. I was in traffic behind a brand new, shiny-clean, full-sized Ford pick-up truck, with a Tennessee plate…and THEN I noticed it was from Harpeth Ford – which I figure can’t be too far from Basset Manor….

  26. EllenT said on February 1, 2012 at 12:39 pm

    Caliban, you are entirely correct. I hit submit on the comments before I could add something along the lines of: You can pass whatever laws you want on sex or evolution or school prayer, as long as you are willing to let bidness have its way on taxation and regulation.

  27. basset said on February 1, 2012 at 1:19 pm

    Harpeth Ford is 17.53 miles from the Manor, according to Mapquest… looked at brand new, shiny-clean, full-sized Ford pickups there some years ago, ended up buying one somewhere else, it was a POS from day one and I got rid of it with 17K miles after the engine had been (the dealer claimed) replaced.

    I have a Subaru now and go to a dealer right down the street from Harpeth for service; owner is a retired race driver who got in a godawful wreck at Daytona and smashed his thighbone. His Honda store next door has on display, along with one of his race cars, trophies, helmets, and so forth, the plate and thirteen or fifteen or something screws that were installed to hold the bone together after the wreck and removed five years later after he’d healed up. Looks like a metal ruler and a bunch of grooved bolts.

  28. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on February 1, 2012 at 1:22 pm

    Bassett, we’re all on Ritalin around here. The subject changes are faster than Gingrich wives.

  29. alex said on February 1, 2012 at 1:32 pm

    Harpeth.

    O Nancy Grace, how thou dost afflict me!

  30. brian stouder said on February 1, 2012 at 2:01 pm

    And Alex wins the thread!

  31. caliban said on February 1, 2012 at 2:09 pm

    Somebody on some lip-synch site has got to do video of Willard “singing” that Lee Greenwood drivel about “at least I know I’m free”. The idea of Mittens sans shirt is making me queasy bordering on nauseated. Cut it out.

    Lily Ledbetter on the eponymous law. To quote Biden, this is a big fucking deal. As it is, this woman was a victim of both her employer (Goodyear), and the recalcitrant, reprobate, reactionary activist judges shitty GOP presidents packed onto the SC.

    When the Killing’s Done, a superb novel about invasive species (by TC Boyle, and if you never tried him, I suggest The Sot-Weed Factor first). Nobody wins. And since corporations are people, my friend, how ’bout some hefty fines for those corporate citizens of the shipping persuasion that don’t obey regulations and introduce invasive marine species by dumping bilge tanks in the Great Lakes (hell, probably at the docks at the Port of Chicago). Hello zebra mussel.

    EllenT, the Tejas laws that Perry plays fast and loose with belong in a banana Republic, but Perry’s personal turpitude and concupiscent snarfling in the graft trough is mind-boggling. His good buddy and the radioactive medical waste dump story? Beggars belief. What a fracking crook.

    Make mine Adderall Jeff. How the hell is one drug effective in treating both narcolepsy and hyperactivity (when, generically, it’s salts of amphetamine)?

  32. brian stouder said on February 1, 2012 at 2:28 pm

    A new quote to add to Mitt’s greatest hits!

    http://blogs.villagevoice.com/runninscared/2012/02/mitt_romney_adm.php

    “I’m in this race because I care about Americans,” Romney told CNN anchor Soledad O’Brien. Yet, puzzlingly, he followed this statement with, ,“I’m not concerned about the very poor. We have a safety net there.” [emphasis added by me]

    Gotta love unforced errors!

  33. Kirk said on February 1, 2012 at 2:52 pm

    Is your vehicle dealer anyone we (I) might have heard of, Basset?

  34. MarkH said on February 1, 2012 at 3:08 pm

    Safety net, eh? Mitt has never set foot in Appalachia.

  35. MarkH said on February 1, 2012 at 3:22 pm

    Kirk, I’m thinking Darrell Waltrip, but based on the research I just did, maybe not.

  36. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on February 1, 2012 at 3:27 pm

    I’ll defend Mittens this far, at least — I’m more worried about the 11th to 35th percentiles economically than I am the bottom 10. That “next notch up” demographic is where I see the most direct suffering from the intersection of poorly thought-out or punitive policy pinching down against job loss and lack of new employment with stability and “benefits.” Which, as you read his full answer to Soledad O’Brien, is what he was getting at. Glad he sees that, aamazed that he doesn’t have the internal self-editor to whisper “dude, don’t hand them the unforced error.”

    Nothing like narrating your own negative ads! He will sound lovely this fall repeating that over and over and over and over . . .

    Caliban, by the time I make the end of this week, my pick with be Haldol. Or Thorazine. (Do they still make Thorazine? What’s the stuff McCoy got shot with in “The City on the Edge of Forever”? Maybe I need that.)

  37. Brandon said on February 1, 2012 at 3:31 pm

    I might have said this before, but doesn’t Nancy Grace look like a human Furby?

  38. Bitter Scribe said on February 1, 2012 at 3:33 pm

    Romney’s quote was out of context. But so what?

    Romney made a huge deal about Obama saying “We can’t run on the economy” (I’m paraphrasing)–and he refused to retract it even after it was made clear Obama was saying that from the perspective of the 2008 McCain campaign.

    After that stunt, Mittens has absolutely no right to complain about context in any way, shape or form.

    As Jack McCoy said on “Law & Order,” “You made the rules. We just upped the ante.”

  39. basset said on February 1, 2012 at 4:04 pm

    You’re right, MarkH, it is Darrell Waltrip. Used to watch him run ARCA in a ’64 Chevelle at Salem, Indiana way back when… he went on to the big time and is now a Honda/Subaru/Volvo dealer and TV race commentator.

  40. Kirk said on February 1, 2012 at 4:13 pm

    Yes, D.W. definitely is someone tons of folks have heard of.

  41. brian stouder said on February 1, 2012 at 4:41 pm

    One of my older brothers always always always rooted for Darrell – as opposed to “Iron Head” (#3)….and then he became a Jeff Gordon fan.

    If I had to pick a NASCAR guy to root for, it would be Jeff Burton…

  42. basset said on February 1, 2012 at 4:42 pm

    And not by accident… he was the first NASCAR driver to really understand the value of promotion, and did it just as the sport was going national.

    Now, though, it’s all ABOUT marketing strategies and target demographics, and as a result, increasing numbers of us don’t even watch any more. Too much like pro wrestling on wheels; now I pull for Darrell Basham in ARCA and whatever Kinsers are running in WoO. Sure was tough, though, to see Darrell lose the Anti Monkey Butt Powder sponsorship.

  43. MarkH said on February 1, 2012 at 4:42 pm

    Kirk, I just ordered “The Limit” from amazon. Have you had a chance to read your copy yet? Also, do you have my most recommended book on that era of Formula One, “The Cruel Sport”? Originally out in 1964, an updated version (I have this and two first editions) is out. It is quite expensive now but is an excellent collection of photos an narrative from the time captured very well by Robert Daley.

    http://www.amazon.com/Cruel-Sport-Grand-Racing-1959-1967/dp/0760321000/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1328131179&sr=1-1

    Daley was a New York Times columnist and author (Prince of the City). This book was the inspiration for John Frankenheimer to produce and direct “Grand Prix” in 1967. In fact, though he never optioned the book, Frankenheimer had entire lines of dialog lifted from Daley’s book and put in the film. The title came from Dan Gurney, who, early in his F1 career was heard to comment, “this is a cruel sport” while observing the aftermath of a particularly nasty fatal track accident.

  44. caliban said on February 1, 2012 at 4:56 pm

    Appalachia? Mitt has never set foot in Southie or Roxbury.

    Nancy Grace? Evil twin, separated at birth from Madamoiselle Cochon.

    I had to look up furby, but yeah, the resemblance is unmistakable.

    No more Thorazine, I don’t think, at least not for antipsychotic use. Had extremely debilitating side effects, like dyskinesia (tremors, tics) zombification (outright brain damage), which the secondary or atypical antipsychotic drugs do not produce as profusely as Thorazine or Stelazine. My favorite Star Trek episode, and probably Joan (The British Open) Collins’ finest career performance. A Harlan Ellison story, I believe.

  45. Jeff Borden said on February 1, 2012 at 5:19 pm

    I’m fairly certain that whatever it is Mitt Romney thinks he knows about very poorest among us came from watching reruns of “Good Times.”

    I’ve never quite seen a phenomenon like Willard. This guy has been running for six years and he still comes across as a rank amateur, though it’s clear he can improve as we saw in his more recent debate performances, where he mopped the floor with Newticles. He’s going to need more shoes than Zappos if he keeps sticking his foot in his mouth like this.

    It’s really a shame he has changed his stripes so much because I think he’d have merited some consideration as a modern-day Rockefeller Republican, but the current state of the GOP requires that you be somewhere to the right of Genghis Khan, so screw him.

  46. MarkH said on February 1, 2012 at 5:35 pm

    City on the Edge of Forever, caliban. Ellison, yes, and a great episode. McCoy accidentally ingests thorazine, goes nuts (“Assassins!!”), goes back in time and changes history. Kirk and Spock to the rescue at the expense of Collins’ character.

    As an Ellison fan, have you read the compilation of his late ’60s TV columns for the LA Free Press, The Glass Teat? Great funny commentary on that era of television.

  47. Sherri said on February 1, 2012 at 5:53 pm

    Romney is remarkably tone-deaf for someone who’s been running for office as long as he has been. I’m about half convinced that a lot of his problem with the right-wing is that he can’t speak dog-whistle.

  48. caliban said on February 1, 2012 at 5:54 pm

    Jeff,

    For my money, the fact that Windvane Willard made the slide down the slippery slope so effortlessly makes him an ultimate political douche. Not The Glass Teat (have to try to find that), Mark, but I’ve read the stories in Partners in Wonder about five times apiece. ( A man sits in a chair. It is biting his leg.)

  49. Scout said on February 1, 2012 at 5:58 pm

    No surprise there, Sherri, we all know his track record with dogs. It has recently come to light that poor Seamus, the Irish setter that Mittens strapped to the roof of the car for a 12 hour road trip, ran away as soon as the family arrived in Canada and released him from his nightmare. I guess that’s why we only hear about the trip there, with no mention of how Seamus was conveyed back home.

  50. ROGirl said on February 1, 2012 at 6:06 pm

    Mittens needs to be held accountable for the shame of Seamus.

    http://www.dogsagainstromney.com/

    Caliban, TC Boyle didn’t write the Sotweed Factor.

  51. caliban said on February 1, 2012 at 6:13 pm

    Right, RO Girl, I meant to type Water Music, which I find a companion piece to John Barth’s novel. Hard to say which is funnier, but they are both connected to the story of O Lucky Man in my mind. Starry-eyed heroes out to make their fortunes in the great wide world like Mick Travers.

  52. Jolene said on February 1, 2012 at 7:28 pm

    David Letterman is now doing a running joke re Romney’s dog. It’s a cartoon clip that ask what the dog is tied to now. Last night, it was the top of the St. Louis arch.

  53. nancy said on February 1, 2012 at 9:01 pm

    There’s a Facebook group called something like Mutts Against Romney, “a super-pack.” Motto: Grrr. I looked at it and on the first page was picture of a dog owned by a woman I know here in GP. Caption: “I’m Bear, and I ride inside.”

  54. Jolene said on February 1, 2012 at 10:01 pm

    You all saw this story re Axelrod tweaking Romney over where the presidential dog rides, right?

    http://www.npr.org/blogs/itsallpolitics/2012/01/31/146152142/campaigns-embrace-twitter-who-let-the-snark-out

  55. brian stouder said on February 1, 2012 at 10:23 pm

    Jolene, that’s a nice photo of the president and his dog, but the first thing I would note, if I was engaged in an angry Twitter exchange*, would be that POTUS isn’t wearing a seatbelt. (I believe President Ford’s limo smashed into a car in an intersection in Washington DC, so the issue is genuine….)

    *What an odd (and yet eerily accurate) name for an internet application, eh? I don’t know what Twitter really is, nor why anyone actually fools with it, so the 21st century continues to roll clean away from me!

  56. Deborah said on February 1, 2012 at 10:24 pm

    We’re off to Manhatten tomorrow and through the weekend. We started this tradition of going there over Super Bowl weekend because we are not sports fans and no one is there then. Little did we know that the Giants would be involved. But thank goodness the game won’t be played anywhere near there this year. Someone told me that next year NY is where the Super Bowl will be played so we will be making other plans. But at least again this year our plane fare and hotel expenses are low, low, gloriouly low.
    My friend who knows Ginger (of Gilligan’s Island, Tina Louis) is having another party while we’re there. I’ll let you know if she’s there again.

  57. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on February 1, 2012 at 10:29 pm

    Cordrazine. Which apparently was a sly tribute to Cordwainer Smith by Harlan Ellison.

  58. brian stouder said on February 1, 2012 at 10:30 pm

    Deborah, if you see Ms Louise, tell her that when I was 12, I thought Maryanne (Dawn Wells?) was prettier; but from when I hit my 20′s to the current day, she was the one who would make me stop and look.

    (Hopefully they paid her all her royalties!)

  59. Dexter said on February 2, 2012 at 1:39 am

    We have a homespun and home-owned radio station near here, over in Archbold, and they use only local personalities. One day about 15 years ago they interviewed Mary Ann on a phoner .
    She’s a real hoot, I’ll tell ya. She told of how over the years so many men thanked her for all the intense pleasure she had given them when they were teen aged boys.
    I never played the decision game…I thought Ginger and Mary Ann were both hot.

  60. MarkH said on February 2, 2012 at 2:54 am

    I have a few Brushes With Greatness. One is getting to meet Dawn Wells. Some years back she moved to the little community of Driggs, Idaho, just over the mountains from from us here in Jackson. She started a film festival of sorts and an acting school. She was at a local fund raiser here in Jackson looking for support for the non-profit festival when I talked to her. This was about six years ago. She looked great as the photo in the link below will attest. Approachable, energetic, friendly, fulfilling Mary Ann expectations. She has since moved back to California, I think. Our local alt-weekly takes it from there:

    http://www.planetjh.com/news/A_101679.aspx