The Show that Never Ends – #SoCS

It is a dark and stormy Saturday in Connecticut. Sorry, I couldn’t resist. But it is Saturday and it’s time to head to the bar, where our conversation will be guided by Linda Hill’s Just Jot it January and Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt. Today, Linda invites us to talk about the appliance/industry that defines much of our leisure time:

Your prompt for #JusJoJan and Stream of Consciousness Saturday is: ‘television.’ Talk about your favorite show, past, present, or future, or about the apparatus itself. Enjoy!”


If we were having a beer, a recent broadcast would be underlying our conversation.

“How does it feel to have been made redundant?”

“Hello to you, too. What on earth are you talking about?”

“Oh no. Are you two are heading down a rat hole? Can I get your drink orders out of the way first?”

“He’s the dog on point, Cheryl. I don’t have a clue. But, I will have a Corona.”

“I will have a glass of John Howell’s bourbon, and it’s not a rat hole, it’s a simple question.”

“OK, I’ll get the drinks, Dan, you’re good with simple.”

“Um thanks, Cheryl…”

“Sorry, that didn’t come out right. I meant simple questions. Oh wait, that doesn’t sound right either. I’ll just get the drinks.”

“So, what’s this ‘being made redundant’ stuff. Doesn’t that mean being laid-off from my job?”

“Perhaps, if your job was in England. I just meant that you’ve been replaced.”

“How? Where? Is someone else picking up this bar tab? If so, I should get some bourbon.”

“No – I’m talking about Great River Park. You’re always posting pictures of the Hartford skyline from there, but I saw that on the news this week. Who needs you?”

“Ha – OK, now I get it. I was in the park when they were filming that. What bit of breaking news was that?”

“At first I thought it was going to be about a guy on a Lime Bike riding into the icy river.”

“Speaking of limes, your Corona is back with her lime, and here’s your bourbon. The rest is coming.”

“Why does everybody assume that I’m going to end up in the river?”

“Let’s just say, it wouldn’t be out of character.”

“He’s right, Dan. I mean you do have a history. Here’s your ice and seltzer. I have to check downstairs.”

“Thanks Cheryl. Anyway, the video was an advance weather report about the storm.”

“The storm coming tonight?”

“Yes.”

Snow, and then it gets cold.

“That’s why they were standing in front of the river on Tuesday? Because a storm was forecast for Saturday?”

“Yes. You know how those weather people are. Standing in harm’s way to bring us the latest updates.”

“Let me tell you something about harm’s way. I watched those clowns for about five minutes. The camera guy was out there the whole time. Setting up, checking stuff and running back and forth to the equipment in the back of their SUV. The weatherman got out at the last minute, spoke for thirty seconds and got back in the car.”

“What did you expect? He’s the star.”

“They make it look like he’s braving the elements. He’s sitting in a running car with the heater on. I was out in the cold longer than he was.”

“Are you saying it’s fake news?”

“Don’t go there.”

“Go where? You’re the one getting all spun up over this.”

“I just don’t see what standing in front of a partially frozen river adds to the story.”

“Oh, that’s rich. You stand in front of that same river every morning. What does it add to your story.”

“My ‘story’ is the river. It’s a thing of beauty. I’m not trying to make it look like I’m gathering data to improve my forecast.”

“See, that’s your problem.”

“Wait, now I have a problem?”

“You do have a problem, Dan. You’re at the bottom of that Corona.”

“You’re right Cheryl. I drink faster when aggravated.”

“Well, I can solve that problem.”

“Your other problem is that you’re expecting news from those guys.”

“Those guys? The ones driving around in an SUV plastered with ‘Breaking News’ and the NBC peacock logo on the side?”

“Yeah, those guys. They aren’t in the news business, or the weather business. They get the weather from NOAA, just like you.”

“What business are they in?”

“Entertainment. It’s just another show to watch.”

“And here’s just another beer to drink. Can I get you boys some food?”

“I’d like some wings, Cheryl, and give the old man another splash of bourbon.”

“My, you’re being generous today.”

“He’s dispensing wisdom.”

“He is?”

“I am?”

“Well, you’re right about the so-called-news being entertainment.”

“I’m afraid it’s been like that for a very long time, ever since cable stations made news a twenty-four-hour thing.”

“There isn’t that much news.”

“That’s right. So, they add commentary, opinion, “analysis” and they replay the weather every eight minutes.”

“I miss Walter.”

“Cronkite?”

“Yes. Do you remember when he signed off for the last time?”

“I don’t, I was a Chet and David guy.”

“He gave credit to every poor schlub standing out in the cold, as it were, that helped make him look good. In fact, he downplayed his contribution.”

“You won’t see that today.”

“That’s for sure.”

“Then again, today, they’re leaving as the result of a scandal.”

“And that’s the way it is.”


The video at the bottom is Walter Cronkite’s last broadcast. The gallery is from Great River Park and around the wood stove. I’d also recommend reading Cheryl’s latest post – a different kind of sushi.

73 thoughts on “The Show that Never Ends – #SoCS

Add yours

  1. Good story and yes I remember Cronkite, Chet AND David! There were some terrific newscasters back then – Howard K. Smith, John Chancellor, Peter Jennings, Dave Garraway, just off the top of my head.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. “What did you expect? He’s the star.”

    No truer words about television news people. It’s not that they don’t tell you some information that is true, it’s that they dither around promoting themselves before they get to the news. So annoying.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. I loved Walter too. Newscasts are not the same these days and perhaps that’s why I don’t watch much of it. Especially because you-know-who is always on.

    Give the furry kids some extra pets for me. You can tell MiMi I’d rather be cozying up to fire with her today than running around in the cold, cold, cold.

    Have a nice Satuday, Dan.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks Mary. I watch very little “news” these days. I feel like Bob Barker could do the news today. Maybe even fo a better job.

      The fire went out but the stove stayed hot and kept MiMi warm all night. She’s a happy cat.

      Make sure you feed G-man. I’ll brush MuMu.

      Liked by 2 people

  4. I will keep from ranting on news and weather forecasts and just say that I restrict myself to a minimum of it and find I’m much healthier that way. If you can imagine, I still look out the window periodically to see what the weather is doing. And, if I want a chuckle I pull up my AccuWeather app and read how many minutes before I’ll see precipitation. :-) Stay safe this weekend as you create Maddie’s mountain. :-)

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks Judy. I think we could all easily go off on a rant. These guys can be annoying. We look out the window and we watch the birds and squirrels (who seem to know what’s coming well before it’s here). Safety is essential this weekend. I’ll keep it in mind.

      Liked by 2 people

  5. Infotainment. What a horrible word. Newscasts now just chase ratings rather than the truth. Just the facts ma’am, just the facts. Facts seem to have become opinions and there are too many of those.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Great conversation Dan. I loved Walter Cronkite and enjoyed seeing him and hearing his wonderful voice. Truth in news left with him and Chet and David and Peter Jennings, etc. It’s true, newscasts are nothing more than rating wars with the other stations. I watch very little of any news broadcast because there’s very little news aired! If it’s opinions I want to hear, I can just listen to my husband…..he has a huge supply of them!! Lol.

    MiMi is so cute doing her contortions and enjoying that fire to the fullest. And the beautiful redhead is always a treat to see!!

    Not looking forward to what’s being predicted for our area. Hope everyone stays safe in the storm and no one loses power. More likely than not Maddie will see her snow mountain!
    🐾Ginger 🐾

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks Ginger. I choose (carefully) the people whose opinions I listen to, and it ain’t these clowns. The other thing that aggravates me is the news stories they don’t bother to tell, because they’re too busy advertising themselves.

      Weather reporting in advance of and during a significant event is so ridiculous. I swear I can look out the window, watch the birds and the squirrels and have a better idea of what’s coming.

      We’ll clear the snow, build a pile for Maddie and light a fire for MiMi. I hope we all have electricity throughout the storm.

      Stay warm!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. 😀😞So funny. So sad. So true. It first got under my skin during the moderate hurricanes in Florida. Young pups, who refused to ever listen to anyone over 30, expounding on the gale force winds they were (stupidly) standing against, with incredulity in their voices as though 60 mph winds had never before visited our shores. Can you say Katrina? Gustav? How about Galveston, 1900…Did you not study weather HISTORY while on your way to the top of the weather stage? Sorry but the outfits alone turn me off.
    I do remember Walter’s last broadcast. I miss him so much. And Brinkley, Barbara Walters, Peter Jennings, Ted Koppel…guys who cared about what the news meant. There are still reporters like that but they don’t get chosen to ‘star’ because no one apparently cares about the truth. They seem to love the drama and glitz so much more. 😞
    I saw the end approaching with the raging success of reality tv. I had my own family drama happening. Why on Earth would I want to watch anyone else’s misery?
    Oops. Best get back to bartending…
    Happy Saturday, Dan. Stay warm. I’m hoping to be able to view that Super Blood Wolf moon tomorrow night. 👏

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks Cheryl. You’re so right about people not being chosen because they are good reporters. They need to look good in those outfits standing in the storm. Now I wonder how much prep work the crew had to do before the star could stand there and look like an idiot.

      My guess is we won’t be seeing much in the sky for the next couple of nights. Maybe things will clear by tomorrow night. If so, I’ll get to see the moon from inside the cab of my snow blower ;-)

      Liked by 2 people

  8. Maybe they ought to say, “BROKEN NEWS!” rather than “BREAKING NEWS!”. Even PBS NEWSHOUR is getting almost impossible to watch.

    Flipping between what they call national news on ABC, CBS and NBC is hilarious. The networks cover the same stories in the same order and read from the same script. Here is the basic outline.

    BREAKING NEWS!
    We hate Trump (like we don’t know that?)
    Weather on the east or west Coast. Mostly around New York or Washington
    Pharmaceutical commercial.
    Weather or national disaster someplace other than the east or west coast of North America
    Pharmaceutical commercial.
    Pharmaceutical commercial
    Pharmaceutical commercial
    Story about a dog
    Pharmaceutical commercial.
    Pharmaceutical commercial
    Pharmaceutical commercial
    Feel good story about something other than a dog
    Pharmaceutical commercial.
    Pharmaceutical commercial
    Pharmaceutical commercial

    Here I get disgusted and fight with my wife to turn to PBS.
    Story on race
    Story on gender
    Story on budget cuts. Wow, something informative, until they veer into the race and gender angle of the budget cut story.

    We turn back to ABC or CBS or NBC in time to catch the last pharmaceutical commercial

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Ha ha – that’s hilarious (until I stop to think about how true it is). I do like the pharmaceutical commercials when they list the side-effects that always sound like some horrible disease that scientists should be trying to cure.

      Liked by 2 people

    1. Sorry about the beers, Shelley. 11 days of abstinence didn’t ruin my appreciation. I’ll leave it at that. I will say that I enjoy beer while watching a sporting event, but I think I need beer while watching the news.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. LOL – That’s the Dan I’ve been counting on to come through for me while I stay Dry for January. Whew – I feel so much better knowing that it still tastes good after a break! ;-)

        Liked by 1 person

  9. I remember the moon missions, covered for HOURS by Walter Cronkite, Wally Schirra (astronaut), and Arthur C. Clarke (sf writer, author of 2001, A Space Odyssey). We geeks called it “The Wally, Walt, and Arthur show,” and watched as many hours of it as we could, non-stop. THAT was television!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I remember his coverage of major events. No commentary about how this party or that party didn’t support this or that. Even the politicians were better (and it takes a lot for me to say that). I don’t meant to suggest they were honest, but…I guess I shouldn’t get started down that road.

      Liked by 2 people

  10. I had my morning coffee late today so I must be off stride here today. It would seem that everything on the tube has been distorted and not at all like it was in the heyday. Reality TV has replaced both entertainment and documentary shows. And while some of it is good there really is not much left of what used to be the staple on the various history and science channels. And the home and garden channel is all home and no garden. Then there is the change in commercials. 90% strange content that may or may not deal with the product being sold and the last two second sometimes flash to the product you really need to buy. Just don’t blink or you will miss it. Now where was I – oh coffee. Ah that is better. Now is it too soon for a scotch neat ? Now stay safe, dry, and warm. Depending on where you are that storm is either coming, here right now, past, or oh never mind we need to get ready for the next storm after the one name H something. Hmmm I think I will look for a Sesame Street rerun where the Letters and Numbers made some sense. A good and somewhat painful post Dan. I think I should have had that ‘said-a-give’ discussion with Cheryl before I joined the discussion.

    Liked by 2 people

  11. News and weather today go all out for the drama. Drama and discord.They love to try to scare us into thinking we have to watch. I’d rather have Walter Cronkite. Thanks for that sweet goodbye video.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks JoAnna. I think you’re right, they want us scared and they seem to want us angry. I think what I liked most about those older news people is that they acted as if they thought we were intelligent enough to handle the facts.

      Liked by 2 people

  12. So many great quotes in this post: ‘the poor schlub’, ‘MiMi melted.’ This is how we feel when Jim Cantore comes to town: “Uh oh. Jim’s on the beach. Must be a hurricane heading our way.” We now have signs that say, “Jim Cantore Go Home.” Yup. Welcome to the news…..

    Liked by 3 people

    1. “Jim Cantore Go Home.” – I love that!

      MiMi does tend to melt in the cradle of the scratching post. She ends up with her head hanging out one ned and her back feet out the other. She loves it when we start a fire.

      Liked by 1 person

  13. The first time we experienced a snowstorm here (which doesn’t happen that frequently, thank heaven), the way the local news treated it was like the world was coming to an end. We no longer have cable, so we’re spared the news channels, and we’re usually watching some old TV show when the network news is on.

    Mary took a journalism class when she was in high school, and the first question the instructor asked was “what is the job of a newspaper?” She was the only one who had the right answer: to sell newspapers. Same is true for the TV news, except they’re selliung laxatives and Viagra.

    Liked by 2 people

  14. Our news here is fed by the Corpus Christi station whose motto is,” If it bleeds it leads.” Loved Greg’s outline of the news. Ours is similar except the ads are for local car and RV dealers with a liability lawyer thrown in. A super post today.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. What?! CBS blocked the video of Walter in ‘your country’ for copyright issues!!! What the ….?!!

    I agree with you that news and weather have become ‘entertainment’. They are sound bites at best … usually over-dramatized, although I have to admit I was annoyed this week with one of the on-location reporters who was simply reporting the facts without context – ie that it was the newest piece of idiocy from our provincial legislature 😏

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Peter Jennings was the best. I had a crush on Peter Jennings before I even knew what a crush was. I grew up with him, he was always there.
    What’s happened to news and to journalism and to actual investigation is atrocious. As all English majors do, I veered a bit in the journalistic side of words and I’m saddened it’s not what it was and deeply saddened future generations won’t even know what it once was. As time goes on, I’ll have more of that in different areas, I’m sure.
    I had to take my brain off the news, it’s been about a year since I watched it. I read some of it. Mostly I get the news from my husband, who has always been there and is even more handsome than Peter Jennings.
    Everything is so hyped up. I think it adds to the outrage.
    Last night we had the misfortune of traveling to two grocery stores, both of which were crowded and in which the offerings were bleak due to the impending snowstorm. Snowstorm is clearly a phrase used too loosely. The snowstorm was to be 5-8 inches OR MAYBE EVEN MORE! over a period of 30 hours. It is now the 12th hour of rain. Sadly, if one went out to get bread and milk today, it’d be difficult to find, because too many people bought 6 gallons and 10 loaves.
    When I was a kid, they’d say it’s going to snow, maybe 5-8 inches. Leave early and be careful out there. It was a more reasonable time.
    I’m getting older, I know. When my kids are my age, the weather reports will be so dire, they’ll probably have to have a months’ meals delivered before the snow sticks to their cars and ruins their lives.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m laughing as I read this. Seriously, 5-7” really isn’t a bother. Clear it and go. It’s not like we have to go out and put chains on and drive up Mt. Death.

      They’ve been talking about this storm for 5 days. Now it’s down to 5” of snow and maybe some ice before 4:00 am. Who gives a rat’s ass what happens before 4:00 am? If it stops by 6:00, I’ll clear it and take my wife to church.

      Film at eleven.

      And, how much bread can a family eat?

      Liked by 1 person

  17. Dan… I’m gobsmacked. You passed up a chance to mention the Twilight Zone? ;)
    The photo “pretty backdrop” — well done. That’s gorgeous. The wood stove looks inviting too. And it’s always nice to see all the furry kids. Have a satisfying Saturday! Hugs.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. This was an amazing collision, Teagan. I saw the “crew” in the park. Then, about half an hour later, I saw the newscast while eating breakfast. It seemed so stupid. When I saw the prompt, the frustration just started pouring out.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I think he was. I think journalists in that era were concerned about the truth and the people impacted by the story. I think they also had respect for the viewer/reader. That’s totally missing today.

      Like

  18. Oh the good old days, Dan. Walter Cronkite had class. Real class. And he knew how to bring us the news. Real news. Today? I refuse to even watch the news …. it is horrid and a huge joke. What is real? There is SO much more good in this world yet if you watched the news you’d get to the point of even walking out your front door.

    The river shots of Hartford absolutely gorgeous! I had to laugh at the pic of the tripod. LOL Yeah, breaking news all right. Not even a camera. Teehee …… Loved to see your furry family ….. Happy Sunday!

    Liked by 1 person

  19. First : I hope you weather the storm back there ( odd idiom , eh ? ). Second : Sorry to say it , Dan , but you seem to be getting dangerously close to the old-man syndrome with a tiny bit of cynicism thrown in . Oh , no , maybe that’s me ! Sorry. Good post .

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ha ha – thanks Dan. I hope I age as well as you have. I need to let my inner cynic out now and then.

      The storm has been less bad than forecast. It’s a mess, but we’re inside watching it.

      Like

  20. I quit television in 2010 and I’m glad I took that decision. Not that I detest it, but I feel the quality of information on most channels is pure shit. It might sell like hot cakes but sorry I’m not buying that junk because I can see jupiter-sized holes in those theories, stories, news and whatever they show. The content is manipulated, edited and served to please what the audiences want. That’s the reason why I don’t have a television at home.

    Liked by 1 person

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