Wednesday, November 12, 2008

American Notes

If I tried, one week after the election, to explain all the long-term changes that now seem possible, I would be guilty of serious bloviating and would certainly lose my worldwide readership in the mid single figures.
So let's just throw around some happenings in the world. There's a network out there that wants to jump into the game show mode. They think they've got a winner in what might be called "Are You Smarter than Sarah Palin?" A camera crew would catch up to the guv, whatever she's doing at the time - cooking, dining, shooting, watching hockey, whatever. She'd just answer the quiz questions on the fly in competition, of course, with contestants. Her only obligation would be to answer the questions and flamboyantly gloat if she wins. Naturally, she'd be well paid, win or lose. OK, that was a joke. Whaddya think? OK, never mind.
What about this? I've been meaning for months to look up something about Cub catcher Geovani Soto. This week he was named the National League's Rookie of the Year, so I finally looked. The question? Isn't it obvious? What kind of name is that, and where does the guy come from, especially since ballplayers now are from all over the world. Here's what I found. He's not Italian. He's not Japanese or Venezuelen. He's as American as salsa, a native of Puerto Rico. Viva!
Remember a while back when an entire blog was dedicated to the work of author David Halberstam? Some young journalists have managed to dig up evidence that the FBI monitored Halberstam's life, sometimes on a day-to-day basis, from the 1960's into the late 1980's and perhaps longer! Imagine how tightly they must have been in on the lives of those New York mobster types. Maybe not.
Did you catch the passing of Studs Turkel late last month? He was famous for doing something that sounds simple - put a tape recorder in front of ordinary people, often older ones, and just let them speak. It sounds easy, but if it was so easy to become an award-winning author, why don't OTHER people do it? I don't know, but I do know that his books are very entertaining, not stuffy or preachy, and very popular. Chicago will miss BOTH him and Obama. He was 96 or so.
NPR doesn't have "sponsors" in the usual sense, but various entities give them "grants" and get mentioned on the air. I was surprised to hear that one current "granter" is - the Department of Homeland Security (a name that liberals, by the way, hate because of the connotation of the word "Homeland", which they associate with NAZI Germany). Can you imagine an NPR program pausing for a nice-sounding female voice saying "Today's terror alert staus, brought to you by the Departmentof Homeland Security, is....yellow. Listeners in Florida are urged to vacate due to the threat of Hurricane Hecter. Be afraid. Be very afraid." The use of the word "afraid" would be heard more in the month before elections, if the GOP controlled the Executive Branch.


Post a Comment

<< Home