November 6, 2014



  1. . . ."What a great occupation."
  2. . . . That’s what she said in one of her campaign ads – standing in a pig sty.
  3. . . . (She was one of five Republicans campaigning for the seat held by Tom Harkin, who is retiring.)
  4. . . . She won.
  5. . . . “When I get to Washington I’ll know how to cut pork,” she said in this particular ad.
  6. . . . The words “Mother ,Soldier, Conservative“ appear on the screen as the announcer calls them off.
  7. . . . Cut to one little piggy in his stall, squealing.
  8. . . . Cut to four little piggies, sleeping on top of one another in a nearby stall. They’re so cute.
  9. . . . Later another little piggy peeks his wittle nose through the slats of his stall.
  10. . . . “My parents taught us to live within our means. It’s time to force Washington to do the same.”
  11. . . . “Because Washington’s full of big spenders. Let’s make ‘em squeal.”
  12. . . . So I guess she’s gonna treat all the folks up on Capitol Hill like livestock, which is probably what they are.
  13. Another Sunday, another new set on “Meet the Press.” Will it bring up the ratings?
  14. . . . “Remember, if it’s Sunday, it’s “Meet the Press,” reminds Chuck Todd.
  15. . . . “See you next “Fox News Sunday,” says Chris Wallace.
  16. . . . The others don’t really have a slogan at the end of their shows but maybe they should each have one./li>
  17. . . . ABC’s George Stephanopoulos or Martha Raddatz or Jonathan Karl –changing anchors -- could say “That’s ‘This Week,’ we’ll see you next week.” (It seems to me they used to say something like that. If they did it was quickly eliminated.)
  18. . . . Bob Schieffer of Face the Nation could say, “Next week we’ll put on a happy “Face the Nation.”
  19. . . . And CNN’s Candy Crowley of “State of the Union” could say, “Tune in again next week as we unionize the state.”
  20. . . . Since when did these talk shows lay claim to owning to a day of the week? They think the two go together like peanut butter and jelly, for crissakes.
  21. JUST HEARD. The Ace Hardware jingle has been changed from “Ace is the place with the helpful hardware man” to “Ace is the place with the helpful hardware folks.”
  22. . . . Doesn’t have the same ring to it.
  23. . . . According to Chicago Business Journal reporter Lewis Lazare, “Ace tweaked the line so it would more accurately reflect the full spectrum of staff that work for the company.”
  24. . . . Political correction.
  25. Anybody up for a ride on the next Richard Branson SpaceShipTwo, which is reportedly under construction despite the crash in the Mojave Desert last Friday?
  26. . . . They say there were 700 people who signed up to take a ride on the first Two, costing $250,000 a pop.
  27. . . . Among them, supposedly, were celebrities Justin Bieber, Ashton Kutcher, Leonardo DiCaprio and Angelina Jolie.
  28. . . . (You’d think she’d be smarter than that. I guess she’s adventurous. After all, it might add more ‘cred’ for her speculative run for political office sometime in the future.)
  29. . . . The rocket goes up 62 miles– suborbital.
  30. . . . The excursion lasts about six minutes and the passengers will experience weightlessness for about two minutes.
  31. “It’s so fun,” says Jimmy Fallon when he and a guest do something silly on the show.
  32. . . . Young people say it that way all the time now.
  33. . . . Whatever happened to saying, “It’s so much fun?”
  34. . . . Whatever happened to adjectives?
  35. MOVIE: “NIGHTCRAWLER.” Go see it, especially if you like watching grisly crimes and mayhem.
  36. . . . L.A. Loner Lou Bloom (Jake Gyllenhaal), in need of a job, observes cameramen racing to crime scenes, chasing ambulances, filming (taping) car accidents, fires, personal disasters – anything sensational or gruesome – and then selling the video to local TV stations for sometimes big bucks. It’s negotiable.
  37. . . . The thirsty, ratings-hungry stations yearn for something gritty (The Nitty GrittyShirley Ellis, 1963, on Congress Records) to lead their newscasts -- in this case a morning news show.
  38. . . . These cameraman/women are ‘nightcrawlers.’ There’s nothing they won’t go after. They scrape the bottom of the barrel.
  39. . . . Lou is fascinated and realizes he wants a part of the action so he buys a ‘camcorder’ – what they used to call them – and a police scanner and joins the underground world of freelance crime ‘journalists.
  40. . . . There’s an accident and he films (tapes) close-ups of a shooting victim being hauled out on a stretcher.
  41. . . . He peddles the video to a low-rated TV station and news director Nina (played by a great Rene Russo) wants the footage to lead her show.
  42. . . . She likes what he’s shot, buys the video and encourages Lou to go out and get more, more, more.
  43. . . . Gyllenhaal lost 20 or 30 pounds for the role to, I guess, make him seem more weird and hollow-looking. He’s creepy.
  44. . . . On a roll now, he finds more disasters, hires an assistant, gets better equipment and a faster car, barreling down freeways, side streets and neighborhoods -- wherever he sees the flashing lights of cop cars or hears something on the scanner.
  45. . . . Nina’s blown away by what this young guy delivers. There’s chemistry between the two and Lou knows he’s got the upper hand.
  46. . . . There’s lots more. That’s all I’m saying now.
  47. NOTICED. Rand Paul looks like uses a lot of something in his hair. It always looks so oily.
  48. . . . The way it hangs down his forehead sometimes reminds me of Elvis Presley or Bill Haley (and His Comets -- “Rock Around the Clock,” 1954, on Decca Records) who occasionally used to have curlicues dangling down their foreheads.
  49. . . . ALSO . . . Is it a rug?
  50. A few weeks ago ABC’s “This Week” had on Stephanie Schirock, president of “Emily’s List,” along with seasoned journalists Bill Kristol, Tavis Smiley and Mary Matalin, discussing, among other things, a “Travel Ban on Ebola Nations ” and the politics factor.
  51. . . . “Emily’s List!” I exclaimed.
  52. . . . What does she know about all this?
  53. . . . I expected her to interrupt the show to discuss which vacuum cleaner repair shops are best for your geographical area.
  54. . . . “NEVER MIND,” as Emily Litella (Gilda Radner) would say on “Saturday Night Live’s Weekend Update” (back in the late 70s), when she was responding to an op-ed that the TV station ran. She would constantly get things wrong and when the news anchor corrected her she’d say, “Never mind.”
  55. That lava in Hawaii from Mt. Kilauea reminds me of “The Blob” movie the way it oozes downhill.
  56. . . . There was a song called “The Blob,” written by – believe it or not -- Burt Bacharach and Mack – not HalDavid and sung by The Five Blobs in 1958 on the Monstrous Movie Music record label.
  57. . . . That movie was paired by Paramount Pictures with another thriller, “I Married a Monster from Outer Space.”
  58. BOOK: “The News Sorority: Diane Sawyer, Katie Couric, Christiane Amanpour – and the (Ongoing, Imperfect, Complicated) Triumph of Women in TV News.” Title long enough for ya?
  59. . . . It’s juicy and has a lot of inside-the-networks-and-TV-industry stories about rising to the top, the backgrounds, the ambitions, the sensibilities, the insecurities, the jealousies and more of three women and others in the biz who have made it to the mountaintop of TV news.
  60. . . . It’s got an index too, which is handy for a book of this sort.
  61. A front page picture in The Washington Post of Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) showed the future majority leader hugging a female supporter in Louisville the day before the election. Her forehead was touching up against his cheek.
  62. . . . They were both smiling before the cameras with people watching them being affectionate.
  63. . . . He’s not that friendly on Capitol Hill, is he?
  64. One of the acts at the “Big Apple Circus: Metamorphosis” show, now at New York’s Lincoln Center through Jan. 11, features a goat pushing a dog in a large guinea pig wheel.
  65. . . . It also stars a sheepadoodle that skips rope.
  66. “YOU GOTTA RISK IT TO GET THE BISCUIT.” That’s what “Dancing with the Stars” judge Len Goodman said to a couple after they completed a routine in which they were dressed up like Bonnie & Clyde. (Goodman’s British colloquialisms are often very funny.)
  67. . . . I don’t know what dance they were doing -- the paso doble, the jive or the cha-cha-cha.
  68. . . . He, Goodman, didn’t think they pushed hard enough or exhibited enough skill and therefore he wasn’t going to give them a high rating.
  69. . . . So next time they better dance their - - - - - off in order to get the Triscuit, er … I mean biscuit.
  70. . . . UH . . . “The Last Time”The Rolling Stones, 1965, on London Records.


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