December 1, 2006


  1. . . . So is the humbug spirit, sorry.  The commercial barrage, the assault begins.
  2. . . . Escape Now! Pack up everything you own and leave the country  -- or forever hold your peace.
  3. DROPPING LIKE FLIES.  They are at Washington’s Channel 4 (WRC).  A number of on-air anchors and reporters have been let go, purportedly because of overall network (NBC) cutbacks.  Entertainment reporter Arch Campbell is the latest casualty.  Others are anchor Susan Kidd, sports anchors/reporters George Michael and Wally Bruckner, tech reporter I.J. Hudson and weekend weatherman Clay Anderson who’s now showing up on News Channel 8.  Money’s tight, so they say.  (Down a few million, I guess.)
  4. . . . Kidd said the “old school” was leaving the building.  And Campbell, who is starting his own Web site (who doesn’t?) said he was being “shoved into the future.”
  5. TRANSGENDERED PLOT.  That’s what ABC’s All My Children is having, by making ‘Zarf,’ a character on the soap, go from male to female.  The storyline started  Thursday and will be told “with dignity,” said a spokesperson from the Gay and Lesbian Alliance, which was consulted about the idea.
  6. . . .  JUST ASKING:  Does the actor (Jeffrey Carlson) that plays the character have to go through with the operation in real life in order to make his performance credible?
  7. That’s some coat the Pope was wearing when he arrived in Turkey on Tuesday.  Winter white, practically floor-length.  (Ermine?)  He could have tripped over it.  It looked very elegant and rich.  (Of course, they’ve got money.)
  8. . . . Is that where my collection money goes?   
  9. Why was that  NATO summit this week in Latvia?  What brought that country out of the woodwork?  Is that near Lapland?
  10. Bob Saget, the guy who hosts NBC’s 1 vs. 100 game show, looks too old in those glasses he wears.  He never wore ‘em on Full House.  I know he’s older now but those glasses don’t help much.  I’d say get rid of ‘em.  And he wore glasses on  that Law & Order episode Tuesday night for the dark character he played.  Not good for the image, whatever that is.
  11. CASINO ROYALE.  The new James Bond flick is pretty good.  It’s been called a reboot of the Bond series of films, this time with British actor Daniel Craig doing the honors, fighting, running and jumping through hoops.  Major hoops.  He’s not like the past Bonds – much more athletic, wiry, very buff (maybe overly buff), blonde and contemporary-looking more than sophisticated.  But he does a good job in the role.  Eva Green (Vesper Lynd) is this movie’s Bond babe and there’s a major thing between the two of them.  Overall, entertaining movie and a dusting up of the franchise, I guess you could say.
  12. HE CHUNDERED.  That’s an Australian word for “to vomit” and that’s what Elton John said he did when he returned to the stage at a concert in Brisbane.  He had an upset stomach and thought he’d “better chunder in the toilet than all over the front row.”  Eew.
  13. . . . And if I never hear another song by Elton John or read another dumb quote from something he commented on -- that will be a crowning victory for man and womankind.
  14. . . . You’re welcome, ladies.
  15. The Superman Ultimate Collection (box set) has 14 discs in it.  Good God, where’d they get all that material?  How much reject stuff (“bonus material”) can you watch? 
  16. . . .  And there’s a problem with some of the DVD discs included in the set (Superman III Deluxe Edition and Superman:  The Movie) which Warner Home Video says was caused by human error.  They’ll replace.  Hotline:  800-553-6937.
  17. So Sen. Bill Frist (R-Tenn./Majority Leader) won’t be running for president.  Good, maybe he can go back to giving colonoscopies.
  18. . . . He says he needs a sabbatical and wants to “return to my professional roots as a healer”  and resume his medical practice.
  19. . . . What’s he need a sabbaticalfor?  He’s only been in politics since 1994.  That’s not that long.
  20. Mr. Big Stuff asked me this, mimicking what you’re faced with everytime you reach a cashier at the checkout counter:   “You have your CVS card?”
  21. . . . Stuff asks if they’re programmed to say that.  It seems to be the most important thing in the transaction – to get scanned and reenter their burgeoning computer data base for everyone who buys a stupid pack of gum, for crissakes.
  22. . . . Next time, don’t say anything to me.  Just ring up my purchase and hand me my change while I make a beeline outta that godforsaken place.
  23. Lionel Richie was on NBC’s Christmas in Rockefeller Center TV special the other  night and sang Joy to the World.  When he got to the line, “Let every heart prepare Him room,” Mr. Richie sang, “Let every heart prepare His room.”  That’s not the lyric to the song.  And he kept repeating it when he got to that part.  So he better get his Christmas carols right.
  24. . . . And Wynonna Judd performed a very limited range version of Oh Holy Night on Good Morning America Thursday.  She couldn’t hit the high notes and skirted around them.  Tried to make amends.
  25. . . . Plus, she likes to spread her arms wide like the Pope does or a preacher does when they exhort everyone to look toward the heavens and embrace the world.  Gimme a Break!
  26. GOOD READ.  About Lou Dobbs of CNN, in the current New Yorker magazine, titled Mad As Hell: Lou Dobbs’s Populist Crusade.  Tells all about how he’s come to be able to express his opinion on his TV show, Lou Dobbs Tonight, and how he believes what he believes  “unequivocally.” Article explores the inner workings and strategies of winning viewers in the   “cable TV wars” but is mainly about Lou and what Lou likes and demands and what people think of Lou
  27. . . . When You Hear Lou, You’ve Heard It All.  That was a Lou Rawls album (Philadelphia International, 1977)  title but it made me think of Lou Dobbs.
  28. Somebody in an online chat on described actor/director George Clooney as “catnip for women.”  Is this true?
  29. Glad brand trash bags claim they’re “New York City TOUGH,” say the newspaper ads.  “The only trash bags tough enough to keep NYC clean.”  And for every box of Glad Trash Bags one purchases between November and January, Glad will donate a box to the city’s Department of Sanitation.   
  30. . . . I wonder if Boy George liked them when he was cleaning up the streets as part of his sentencing for falsely reporting a burglary and then getting caught with cocaine in his apartment.  Maybe he’d do a TV commercial.
  31. ‘VIA BROADBAND.’  That’s how CNN ‘broadcast’ their LIVE report from Cuba with reporter Morgan Neill who was talking to anchor Kyra Sedgwick, er … I mean Phillips, in Atlanta.  Actually it’s what they call streaming over the Internet.  More things are happening like that now.  The video quality is not high-end but that particular transmission looked better, to me, than those Videophones do.  So the Internet’s everywhere and getting better. 
  32. Do y’all still say Xeroxing (what’s that?) instead of copying? (Shows you what generation I’m from.)  Nobody where I work even knows what a Xerox machine is.
  33. The National Enquirer this week features six full pages of captioned pictures of chest calamities in Worst Boobs in Hollywood:  two for the women and the last one, titled Worst ‘Man’ Boobs in Hollywood, for the men.
  34. . . . I’m not in Hollywood but I might qualify for that last one.
  35. NEW ALBUMI LOVE YOU by DIANA ROSS.  Yep, she’s finally got a new one out (as if anyone cares) but I wanted to check it out.  Romantic and soft, whispery, the way she mostly sings now.  Again, it’s the case of a formerly established singer appealing to the older audience by doing the standards.  Produced mostly by industry veteran Peter Asher (James Taylor, Cher, Bonnie Raitt, 10,000 Maniacs),  the album does have some original choices and is not so filled by the regular American Songbook selections.  Decent versions of Bill Withers’s Lovely Day, Billy Preston’s You Are So Beautiful and Heatwave’s Always and Forever – all from the R&B world.  Could have been better but not bad for her first foray back into the pop world.
  36. Friday is World AIDS Day and last Sunday there was a picture showing a woman on a bus in Thailand handing out safe sex information.  And what was she dressed in? 
  37. . . . A huge condom that hung down over her head and on to her body like a see-through dress (she was clothed underneath).  She had holes in it for her arms which, it seemed to me, defeated the whole process.
  38. SO IS IT A 'CIVIL WAR' IN IRAQ OR NOT?  NBC News says it is. They announced that from here on out they're gonna call the conflict just that. Many media outlets and others do say it's a civil war but others (the administration, some more others) don't agree. It's controversial. But is it right for a major news organization to proclaim that it is and then go do their reports? It sounds like an aggressive stance to take. Will the coverage be slanted and more one-sided? There's reason to doubt.
  39. . . . Sorry for the rant but … And yes, we know that NBC isn’t the only one doing it.
  40. Demi Moore still looks pretty good alongside much younger husband Ashton Kutcher.  I saw a picture of the two of them at a Lakers game in LA.  That’s good for now but watch the years catch up on her/them.
  41. Hanalie, dog in the neighborhood, barks loudly when the mailman comes to the house.  And when he drops the mail through the slot in the front door, the dog fetches it in her mouth and brings it to owner Sally. ( Sally swears this is true.) 
  42. Lesley Stahl is getting to look like Carol Channing with that hairstyle she’s had for the last 30 years.
  43. . . . And thank you, 60 Minutes, for finally updating the look of the stop watch and the show logo on Sunday nights.  How long did it take them to make that minor change?
  44. In an Associated Press article about the new movie about the birth of Jesus opening this weekend, The Nativity Story, they say the film “describes Mary’s pregnancy and the trip she and Joseph undertake to Bethlehem.”  Pregnancy?  They should have described her as “with child” or something gentle and tasteful like the Bible or Christmas carols say.  Pregnancy?  That sounds crude and disrespectful.  Make it sound like a miracle.   
  45. . . . UH . . . It’s Gonna Take a MiracleThe Royalettes on MGM (the original version, 1965) and later by Laura Nyro (Columbia, 1971) and later than that by Deniece Williams (Columbia, 1982).


© Rocci Fisch/Random Thoughts

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