It's 8:21am on a Wednesday going into the Easter weekend. I just finished a 2.5 hour morning show. Producers Sonny, Ryan and Mark forgot to put a tea on the table in front of me while I talked. I berated them afterwards.
"We didn't give it to you because it was a good show. You were energetic, attentive, and, well, funny," Sonny said in his defense.
Right now, the Munster Chamber of Commerce with Karen Maravilla is doing a show. Two people from Community Hospital are with her. This is what we do. I talk until 8am or so and then people from the community come in and talk about their stuff. There are dozens of "Community Programming Initiative" shows. They pay to be on the air. Everybody wins.
I started out the morning show at 5:40am standing on Indianapolis Boulevard outside with the wireless microphone pack strapped to my belt. You can hear the trucks zooming by in the background. It doesn't sound great. The rush of the engines sometimes drowns out what I'm saying. But it looks cool on camera. 18-wheelers roll by a few feet away from where I talk and gesticulate wildly.
The scene is all the more surreal in that I stand outside where my relatives first walked into the Region after the Chicago fire 148 years ago. I sometimes feel their presence.
Covered in soot,
walking on foot,
one turns to the other, the
father to mother - This
is the place. Stop.
They took a left and settled a couple blocks from where I'm typing this to you right now. I am hanging around because Ken Benich and Esther Goodes of the Hammond school system aren't sure if they want me to host their show or not. Shamari Walker, you know him, is the featured guest this morning. Shamari won the Amazon scholarship. There's 100 across the country for young engineers.
Shamari is also the guy who wrote the software for the HeyJED app. So they may ask me to guide the show.
... So I stood outside on Indianapolis Boulevard this morning and talked about the mood in this country. I think something is changing. For four and a half years since Trump came on the campaign scene, it's been a barrel of laughs. Really. Whether you like him or not, you cannot deny that Donald Trump has made life entertaining. He's a master showman. He's also an egotist, so what he presents is both funny and sad but never boring.
Things are changing, nationally and locally. I can feel it. It's going from all fun and games to somebody could get hurt. There's an eerie hate that surfaces on the air at WJOB and behind the scenes. The same strain of hate is at the national level. I sense that something bad's gonna happen. I hope that it's just a feeling and that it will pass. Talk soon.
Her daffodils are
dying from an
April snowstorm that was
not supposed to get here
There’s nothing to do but look out the back and listen to “Cold, Rain and Snow” by the Dead. Three inches on the lawn is as inspiring as it is exhausting.
“It’s now snowed for seven months.” Alexis says. “And it got down to 26 below in January.”
Wet socks and sniffles get into your soul. Wind, gripping cold, ice, sleet, and gray skies shake you awake.
“Maybe one day we’ll move to where it’s warm. Or become snowbirds.”
I have an attachment to this area like you wouldn’t believe. Seven score and eight years ago, my forefathers set forth upon this sediment with trepidation, covered in soot and dedicated to the proposition that all Region Rats are related cheapskates.
Take a drive right now. Alexis and I just did to check on her parents. This was a risky venture in that many municipalities have already removed the plows from their trucks. They have to contract out snow removal. We got behind three rentals on the way to Culver’s.
Even the snort
that the long struggle through
cold, rain and snow hasn't
been all that bad.
Her parents love Culver’s. So do I. The fish dinner beats all, especially when it’s hot. Alexis does not respect Culver’s. The only time I get it is during snowstorms. Her parents and I also share an affinity for Long John Silvers, which, as you could probably guess, Alexis does not.
As the three or four of you know, I’m 57-years-old and still studying. It’s fairly accepted among MBA students that you gotta give up your Saturdays. I spent all of yesterday putting together an email campaign for Matt Hanson’s Digital Marketing Class. Eight hours in this chair typing, researching, drawing graphs and hating myself.
It culminates in a presentation at 8pm tonight. I’ll log onto a Webex meeting and so will Hanson. He’ll listen for a few minutes, ask a couple questions, and then move on to the next frustrated marketing student.
“That’s it?” I’ll tell Alexis. “A dozen hours I spent on this damn thing and it’s over in ten minutes?”
It’s not Hanson. It’s the cold. It should be gone by now. I left this area in 1980 for warmth. All through high school – on weekends, after school, over Christmas - I worked construction in bitter cold. Playing baseball in California on an 80-degree day in late January was a dream.
on a snowy
day. I would love to help
you out, but I gotta
be on my way.
Thanks for listening to me bitch about the weather. Is it getting better? No, it’s still snowing. Alexis’s daffodils are drooping, screaming, gasping for life. They only get three weeks a year and old man winter came and took that away.
I worry about us as Americans. I really do. It goes way past the way we talk to each other and the way our leaders to talk to each other. It’s something deeper.
It’s easy to say that we freaking hate each other. That’s way too easy. There’s something deeper. I think we hate ourselves.
I'm tired of
about myself. Gray skies,
Empty checking account,
poor self image.
It's 8:19am on Wednesday. I just finished a 2.5 hour morning show in which I interviewed interviewed Indiana attorney general Curtis Hill, fooled around with Dave Kusiak and Matt Reardon, and made fun of Matt Maloney, whom I traded with at the Chicago Board of Trade.