-Along the trail today I've jotted down a few items on which I thought I'd share an opinion.
-Item number 1...It was the 16th of December. A day we'll always remember. (Sorry, I slipped into Papa Was a Rolling Stone there for a sec) The day we referred to as Black Friday. The majority of KTRS on-air people were told their services were no longer needed. Nothing unusual these days in the maelstrom we know as the radio business. What was a little different was that the station was remaining a talk station. They were just going to do it with new and "edgier" talkers. Sometimes this is done by telling the flesh-and-blood people to take a hike in favor of satellite-delivered, syndicated programming. Not this time. It was a change of people and attitude, more than anything else.
I realize I'm not in the target demo for the new collection of hosts. I'm too old. But, I don't believe I've got the mind-set, or approach to life, of someone most would consider to be old. Most fellow Boomers are still kicking pretty good. And, I think, more than most previous generations, we have a youthful approach to being in our 40's, 50's...and now for some...60's. I think the huge chunk of the population that falls into the Boomer age group makes shooting for the 25-34 demo to satisfy the local ad agency's desired target pretty questionable in the first place.
All that being said, the new lineup at "the Big 550" has either not captured my attention or has lost it. I find myself spending much less time with my radio tuned to 550 than I once did. Now, realize that I'm talking about a station where I have been employed on a full-time basis in the past. I have done some fill-in news anchoring as recently as a month ago. I have some loyalty to, and affection for, the place. Some of the best days of my on-air career were spent toiling at the West Port studios. (Sept 11, 2001 comes to mind) I would very much prefer to be engaged by what's going on there. So, I'm saying this at the risk of not being invited back. I just am not attracted to what they're doing. There's no point in naming names because they are all in the same boat with me. Nothing personal, because I don't know any of the new people...but sorry, so far, I'm not a fan. I still catch my daily dose of Frank O. Pinion...but that's about it. I hope Cardinals baseball provides the ratings boost they're looking for...because, if I'm any indicator of acceptance of the talk offerings...it's going to be needed.
-Item number 2..."Mr. Trivia"... Dave Strauss...apparently has been let go there in favor of the satellite. Dave may have the sharpest mind of anyone I have ever had the pleasure of sharing a studio with. Some local station manager would do well to keep "Mr. Trivia"'s Sunday night tradition going in this market.
-Item number 3...At the risk of sounding cryptic, I caught wind of a rumor that there may be more than meets the eye to what's holding up the sale of the Blues. If you run into me, ask me about it. No phone calls, or e-mails please.
-Item number 4...On January 11th I wrote that someone who was in an East St. Louis house where a 14-year-old boy named Tony Dean died from a gunshot to the head needed to step up and say what happened. There were several relatives in the house at 2 a.m. when it occurred. Police thought at the time that the shot came from inside the house. Relatives say it must have come from outside. A coroner's jury yesterday said the death was a homicide, based on the evidence. But, nobody has come forward to set the record straight.
What I'm wondering now is...how could the coroner...medical examiner...whoever investigated this case from a medical standpoint...take that bullet from the boy's head and not be able to tell if it was shot from long or close range? We've all seen enough episodes of CSI to know that bullets usually tell you where they've been...what kind of weapon they were shot from...and what kinds of material (glass, siding, wood, etc.) they might have encountered before killing someone. We need to get someone else on this case. Something's really fishy about this one.
-Item number 5...If you are a fan of Kevin Lisch and what he has brought, as a freshman, to the basketball program at St. Louis University, just wait to see what his sister Theresa does for the women's program when she plays for SLU next year.
-Item number 6...The Missouri Valley Conference tournament is at Savvis this weekend. I can't believe SLU would rather be in the Atlantic 10. Think of the potential rivalries in the Valley...SIU, Missouri State, Illinois State, Bradley. Meanwhile, SLU fans are treated to the excitement of games with Fordham, Rhode Island, LaSalle and Duquesne. Oh well.