Thursday, February 22, 2007

The New Love Boat

What is it with the Geico television ads? I just don't know whether to love them or hate them. For me they are becoming the new Love Boat. It's a place older celebrities and stars can go to still get their face in the public.

I'm trying to decide which of them is the absolute worst. Several people I've talked to think Little Richard's spot is awful. I kind of think it's Little Richard being Little Richard. Peter Graves, well did you see Airplane the Movie? Burt Bacharach's singing is terrible. He should have retired after the Austin Power's cameo. Charo, well whatever happened to her spot any way? The announcer guy, I always wondered who was connected to that voice.

I think they should have extended the older celebrity shtick to their caveman ads too. Can you imagine Don Rickles with one eyebrow or how about Phyllis Diller? If Mel Blanc was still around they could have gotten him to voice the surly lizard.

A friend of mine mentioned the ad he can't stand is the one featuring Robert Goulet crawling around on the ceiling and being very uncrooner-like. I think that one is for Emerald Nuts. That one I don't really find any problem with other than it's just weird.

One current spot I do like is the Taco Bell ads with the Lions where they are arguing about Ricardo Montalban and he's doing the voice over. I know he has severe back problems and it's good to know he has a talent that can be utilized.

The real shame of it is that some of these celebrities should be getting guest spots on television series because they do have talent. Some of the best dramatic performances I've seen in recent years have been from older stars making guest appearances in tv series. But for some you have to have insurance against getting older and fleeting fame and for others sometimes you just got to sell insurance.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Be My Valentine

The things my radio coworkers say on the air about me sometimes result in interesting results. For some reason the day before Valentine's Day Wade Bates said I needed a valentine and people should send cards, e-mails, drop off cookies etc. You can't see a guy blush over the radio, but I was a little lighter shade of rose red.

Thanks to our lady listeners the joke kind of backfired. I did get e-mails, a nice homemade card, a couple of stuffed animals including a singing teddy-bear that crooned Elvis's "Only Fools Fall In Love, " and some interesting comments. Most were very kind. One asked simply "Why are those guys picking on you?" I really didn't mind and most people know getting Valentine's cards and gifts will pick anyone up.

Here's a nice poem we shared on air from Rhonda Gurno at Wells Manufacturing:

KFIZ-the morning radio show,
Says Bob Nelson has no sweetheart in toe.

Don't worry Bob as you are truly not alone,
There are lots of single folks in the area just waiting by the phone.

No floral delivery, no candy and of course, not even a little pink card,
Can make the deal of Feb. 14, just a little bit hard.

Stand up, rejoice and get yourself a special treat,
Cuz' your fans out here think that you are really pretty neat!

I told Wade that payback can be a little awful, so here goes. It has a St. Patrick's Day theme to it. You can drop off cans of beef stew (do they come in Irish?) for Wade at KFIZ at 254 Winnebago Drive in Fond du Lac or maybe just send him a good luck message. His email address is If we do get some stew maybe we can donate it to one of our local food pantries, they can all use some good luck this time of year.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Rebel Without A Cause

This is Anna Nicole Smith when she was in High School in 1985. Sometimes we forget that most people do have humble beginnings. To tell you the truth I never really cared for her, but seeing tabloid TV picking her life apart less than 24 hours after her death sickened me.

She grew up idolizing Marilyn Monroe and like Marilyn died young. Like Marilyn she began as a small town girl too. I'm not so sure 45 years from now that people will still care about the sad life of Anna Nicole Smith the way they still do for Marilyn.

I guess when I started thinking about Anna's death it reminded me of the sad ending for former Saturday Night Live comic and movie star Chris Farley. He idolized John Belushi and like Belushi died young and had the same problems with drugs and alcohol.

I enjoyed watching Chris Farley and John Belushi. They made me laugh. Animal House, The Blues Brothers I still enjoy watching. Tommy Boy is one of my guilty pleasures. Not so much a fan of Marilyn's, but she did a pretty good job holding her own in Some Like It Hot with Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon.

In talking about Anna Nicole Smith with friends at KFIZ we somehow got on the subject of movies that seemed to feature casts that went on to tragic endings. Rebel Without a Cause. The three lead actors in that 1955 film all died of tragic circumstances. James Dean in a car wreck, Natalie Wood of a suspicious drowning, and Sal Mineo was stabbed to death.

Marilyn Monroe starred in one of those movies too. The Misfits cast her with Clark Gable and Montgomery Clift. All three stars would die within a few short years of its filming. Gable the same year. Marilyn gave a good performance in that too. She was a bonafide movie star. Anna Nicole Smith's best role was as Anna Nicole Smith. Hopefully some young girl out there will carefully consider wanting to grow up to be like Anna Nicole Smith.

Live hard, die young and leave a good-looking corpse! It's attributed to James Dean, but too many try to live up to the saying.

Friday, February 02, 2007

That Hollow Feeling

My boss is a Bear's fan and he hasn't been too bad about rubbing it in this season. He sent this through the station pipeline the other day. It was titled the "Chicago Public School System."

To tell you the truth I know how that little Packer fan feels. I get that same feeling every Super Bowl since Green Bay's last appearance. You choose a team to cheer on, but don't really have a stake in the game.

Sometime Super Bowl weekend I'll trot out the video highlights from the 1996 season and possibly the postgame tape. It makes me long for just one more taste. I hope it's not another 29 years between Super Bowl appearances for Packer fans. Then again the Bears waited 21 seasons and the Colts, well they weren't in Indianapolis in 1971 were they?

Brett Favre announced today he's returning for another season. Yeah I know what you're thinking if you're a Packer fan. Wouldn't it be great if he could quarterback them back to the Super Bowl and ride out into the sunset with another win like John Elway did. Did Green Bay fans feel the same way when Lombardi left and Bart Starr toiled for a few more seasons? Bet they did.

Even when the Packers were in the Super Bowl in the late 1990's I never really cared for all the trappings that went along with the game itself. I enjoy the game, every thing else is a distraction. If you want music superstars performing, wait for the Grammys. Pregame could be a few hours shorter and post game goes on too long. Let the winners enjoy themselves.

Of course it could be worse. In case your keeping track the Packers have won 3 Super Bowls, the Bears 1 (pending Sunday), the Minnesota Vikings have lost four, and the Detroit Lions (sorry, Sis) have never been.

Either way I'm an NFL fan and enjoy watching almost any game, except of course for the Pro Bowl.