short-fingered vulgarian, third wife skulk babbling from White House

2021.01.07

2019.07.01

2019.04.19

Walking along the seawall around Stanley Park, we came upon a seal eating an octopus. Looks like it was chewy. I added the library music. You can supply your own Rex Allen/Disney wildlife documentary voiceover. (“Well, sir, ol’ Stephanie found that while that octopus might’ve been delicious, it was a whole lot chewier than expected...”)

Sorkin jumps shark

2014.12.15

Once upon a time -- long, long ago -- Aaron Sorkin was a respected writer. First there was “A Few Good Men,” (play, then a movie) and television series -- “Sports Night, “The West Wing” and a lot of other excellent work. There were stumbles -- “Studio 60 On The Sunset Strip” was supposed to be Sorkin’s imagined version of what it was like behind the scenes at “Saturday Night Live,” which limped through a single season that included a hiatus of almost three months. (Tina Fey’s “30 Rock” debuted the same year with the same basis -- a sketch comedy show and its staff -- and survived, with the added bonus of being funny. “30 Rock” even got Sorkin to do a guest cameo as himself in the episode “Plan B” in 2011.)

     Then came “The Newsroom.” If Sorkin had done any research or spent half an hour in a TV newsroom, it didn’t show up in his work. To make things worse, “The Newsroom,” was predicated on 18-month-old news and Sorkin’s total ignorance of how television news is made. It seemed like Sorkin felt TV news had not done its work correctly, and he wanted to use the series to demonstrate how the major stories from a year-and-a-half earlier should have been handled. A lot of the plots had stories magically dropping into the laps of the newsroom personnel, a nightly newscast that somehow wrote and produced itself without any people being involved and live shots and packages that were only a few seconds long.

     It was so bad the Washington Post called it “the worst prestige show on television.” The memory of it was bad enough for The Guardian begged that it not be revived when Sorkin threatened to do just that in 2019.

Rock ’n’ Roll Heaven (Special Edit)

1988.08.27

WNBC (“Sixty-six, double-you ENN bee cee!”) switched format and call letters in October 1988. In its waning days as a music station, it was the Time Machine, running a “faux forty” throwback format recreating what WABC had done in the 1960s and 1970s (it had flipped to right-wing talk in 1982). Overnights were the province of Jay “Big Jay” Sorensen and his “Record Pig” music trivia feature. At some point, he’d remade The Righteous Brothers’ 1974 hit with a block and a blade and a mess of old records.

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