Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Star Wars Drinking Game

In honor of the opening of Revenge of the Sith (which I still haven't seen) I give you the Star Wars drinking game. Only played once when I lived in LA. Next day was a rough one.

Is there a TV news drinking game? We could play it at MacGregor's parties.

Update: from my words to google, there is one. When I get some free time (sometime towards the end of June) maybe I'll rework this game MARKET 117 specific.

Moving On

Wen Tung, is leaving WEEK and MARKET 117 for KSEE in Fresno (also owned by Granite broadcasting. Tung, formerly a per diem newswriter at WGN, had been working as the morning show producer and filling in as a reporter for 25. Best of luck!

Timing Is Everything

From Bill Flick's Sunday column

Former WHOI assignment editor Howard Packowitz couldn't catch a break recently...

A fire drill on WJBC: This could only happen to Howard Packowitz, the likable ex-WJBC newsman who nonetheless undergoes life experiences that only Howard -- or possibly Inspector Clouseau -- could undergo.
Other day on R.C. McBride's show on WJBC, it was hyped all morn that Howard -- these days he's at the Dow Jones Newswire in Chicago -- would be a special guest, in honor of the station's 80th birthday bash.
Finally came Howard's big moment.
He went on-air, live, with McBride.
That also is precisely when a fire alarm went off in the building where Howard works, a voice in the background booming over a loudspeaker that this was a fire drill and everyone should evacuate the building immediately.
Unimpeded, Howard tried to go on being interviewed anyway, cell phone in hand, huffing and puffing with fellow workers as they streamed out, all the while also trying to explain to those around him why he was continuing to talk on a telephone.
("I'm being interviewed on live radio! ... please, everyone, I'm on live and having problems hearing ...").
Said McBride later: "I thought at first he was putting me on, but no ... "
Yup, only Howard.

How To Get A Job In TV News

Don't be the winner on a reality show. Just the latest in a long line of reality contestants to cross over...

From NewsBlues...

NBC "Apprentice" alum Erin Elmore has been signed for another month of "tryout" with Jacksonville's Gannett-owned "First Coast" duopoly of WTLV-12-NBC and WJXX-25-ABC.

And she has her own blog. Does anyone else who watches the show (Amanda?) think she looks like a brunette Paris Hilton?

Update: One other thought... when Erin had to host a show as part of an Apprentice challenge, I thought she was excellent and thought even then, she could work in TV, not knowing aside from being an attorney that she went to school for broadcast and political science. Adding that all up, I think it's kind of suprising she didn't get a chance to start somewhere bigger than Jacksonville. So consider this me tempering my observation in lumping her in with other former reality types.

Monday, May 30, 2005

Wedding Bells

Congrats to Darrin Willhite and Miranda Kahn on their upcoming wedding. Darrin checked in with the blog this holiday weekend. He was a TV 10er at ISU and worked as a producer at WHOI before moving up the management ranks at WQAD in the Quad Cities market. They now work at competing stations in the Palm Beach market.

Update: Darrin... I left our address on you fiance's voice mail. E

Movie Weekend

Saw "Sideways" and "Closer" on PPV. Great dialogue and some stellar performances in both, but as a whole, I thought both were good, not great. Maybe my expectations were too high with the nominatins each had etc.

Today's Talent

Former WHOI chief met Michael Kelting is the featured talent on Medialine today.

Sunday, May 29, 2005

Cards On Televsion

I like cards, but I'm not a card player. Steve Tarter shares his list of boring TV genres and broadcast poker heads up the list. I'm with him on this. I just don't get it.

Although it has gotten me thinking recently. Anyone remember the Weird Al Yankovic movie "UHF?" They had a sequence where as an independent UHF station they were coming up with their own bizarre programming and running a commercial to publicize their lineup. That commercial had the same tone as the ones you hear on HGTV and TLC... you know for all the various baby, wedding, dating stories or the infinite number of ways to buy, sell or fix a house.

Narrowcasting has really taken over...

The Longest Yard

Saw the remake of "The Longest Yard" tonight. Not a big fan of remakes generally if I liked the first one. The original version of this movie was gritty and had heart, so I went in kind of skeptical. But this movie was freakin hilarious and much funnier in the laugh out loud sort of way. Yes, it had cameo after cameo, the predictable, gratuitous Sandler humor added to it (as well as an appearance by Allen Covert) plus updated dialogue, very specific to the last decade (and maybe that'll date it), but all that combined to make it enjoyable. They really tried hard not to be the original. Yes, a lot of it was immature and sophomoric (and a few shots, honestly kind of gross), but if you're looking for that going in, and you like Sandler, I think you'll really enjoy this flick.

Friday, May 27, 2005

Drive Safe Everyone

Before you see live shots to this effect, attention:

busy roads.

Have a great holiday weekend. Regular blogging returns soon.

Wednesday, May 25, 2005

Saying goodbye. Posted by Hello

Jerry Says Goodbye

He never worked in MARKET 117, but he says he'll visit on his way down to Texas. Congrats to my friend Jerry on his retirement from television.

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

Storybook Season Ends

Congrats to my Pekin girls soccer team on the best season in school history. Lost to undefeated Normal West 8-0 tonight.

Thanks to Charlie Whiteman, currently of WQAD, formerly of WMBD and WHOI for stopping by to say "hello."

24 Finale

I can't wait until January.

Monday, May 23, 2005

15,000 Visits

Sometime tonight, MARKET 117 is going to hit 15,000 visits. I really wasn't sure what to think when I started this, but I do appreciate you reading. I've kind of gotten a way from it a bit with soccer season as I'm definitely not watching as much television. Still, it's kind of therapeutic just to put thoughts down.

What Do You Have?

From Steve Tarter's column in the PJStar

TV facts
The number of Americans without pay TV is now less than 13 percent and shrinking, according to a recent report.
The Consumer Electronics Association found that of the 110 million U.S. homes with at least one television, 68 percent have cable while 22 percent are on the satellite. About 3 percent get both.
The decision not to subscribe to cable or satellite is generally not made for economic reasons but because people don't watch much TV, the group noted.

I found this interesting, especially with my parents down for the weekend. I'm in the 3 percent. I have DirecTV (mostly for the NFL package), but I also have the most basic form of cable (what the heck, I have a cable modem) because with the occasional weather issues on satellite, you still want to be able to check out the weather. Now that DirecTV offers local channels, I think our plan is to get those when we move into the new house next spring, but I'm still going to hang on to the cable just in case.

My parents on the other hand have never had anything except over the air signals and they're right in line with the study... just don't feel like they watch enough TV.

Sunday, May 22, 2005

Refuse To Lose

Congrats to my Pekin Girls soccer team on a great win and an incredible finish. I'm still stunned 24 hours later by the kind of heart my kids showed out there yesterday.



Friday, May 20, 2005

A Blogging Success Story

One of my goals for this blog was to keep people in touch, but this is worth sharing...

In a post about lunch one day, I mentioned Dave Slyman who runs the Adams Street Cafe. Dave married Annette Eulitt who I worked with at 31 for all of a week or two.

Via a google search, a guy named Scott from Alabama stumbled upon MARKET 117 and e-mailed me saying he was looking for one of his fraternity brothers, a guy named Dave Slyman from Peoria who went to Auburn.

I checked with Annette and they're back in touch... and in fact another brother found Dave, I guess through Scott.

MARKET 117: connecting people.

Star Wars Episode III

I grew up loving Star Wars. Had all the action figures etc.

Looking forward to seeing the last of the series... maybe tonight, maybe not. We'll see.

Enjoyed Lisa Miller's story the other night... Bob Carroll's from yesterday too. I couldn't help but wonder though if the one guy in Lisa's story asked her to play the role of the princess when the interview was over.

Bob having the shrink interview was priceless.

When Episode I came out, my friend Darryl and I did the 11:00/11:30 live shots (California), stayed for the movie and also did stuff for the morning show. That was a lot of fun.

I know some people like to crack those dressing up, but it's all in good fun I suppose. It can get a little odd. What scared me was seeing the second Matrix after a video shoot in Roanoke, VA. Some guy in a trench coat was standing in the front row, waiting for the screen to light up as if he was Moses and the Ten Commandments were about to be projected. Yikes.

Edgar For Governor

I'd like to see former Governor Jim Edgar run again, just so I can get my hands on a sign that says "Edgar for Governor."

Thursday, May 19, 2005

Next Sweeps

Don't you see it now... "Working For A Living"... Mac and Mike give facials and pedicures. A definite ratings winner.

Jenny On Markley And Luciano

Caught Jenny Li on the 1470 on the way home. Very entertaining. She was plugging her sweeps piece on men getting manicures, pedicures, facials and massages etc.

You know part of the stigma is that kind of stuff is seen as girly and she addresses that, talking about men only spas. But I mean think about how many guys will only go to a barber. Its just the way things are I suppose.

This coming from a guy who used to wear makeup.

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Renee Is Engaged

Someone left a comment recently, but wanted to get it confirmed before I posted. Heard straight from the source today.

Renee Charles, formerly of WMBD is getting married. She's in the process of planning a September wedding.

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Thanks to 25 and 31...

specifically Kurt, Lee, Mac and Mike... for mentioning the Pekin soccer score and our the girls' first winning season ever.

We're taking baby steps and every little bit of encouragement helps!!!

And as a bonus... you end up on the blog.

Double Digits

Congratulations to my Pekin girls soccer team. They ended the season on a four game winning streak and reached a double digit win total for the first time ever. Their record of 10-6-1 is the first winning season in the history of the program.

Monday, May 16, 2005

"24" update

I paid for the whole seat, but I'm only using the edge.

Day Off

A big day off today. Met with the bank and the builder. We're on our way.

Also saw "Kicking and Screaming." Funny. Not a great movie, but if you're in the mood for something like this... it's worth it.

"I'm a tornado of anger swirling about."

You would think I'd post more on a day off, but not really...

Day off tomorrow. Pre-school visit. Senior Night for my soccer team. The good stuff.

Market Jumping

Kimberly Houk has moved to a reporting job at WJZ-TV in Baltimore from KSL-TV in Salt Lake City.

I only met Kimberly once. Doubt she'd even remember, but I had taken my oldest to one of those weekend train events/computer sales (or something of that nature) at the Civic Center and she had this distraught look on her face. You know... the "I have a package and what seems like a dozen VOs/VO SOTs every Saturday and Sunday" look. While her photog was getting shots. I introduced myself and mentioned that Shannon had worked the shift she was on... that it wouldn't be forever. Soon after she was gone.

Sunday, May 15, 2005

Substance Please

Speaking of "The Day After Tomorrow", Steve Tarter would rather see something about global warming than some of the lighter fare we've received this sweeps period.

The Day After Tomorrow

I'm not usually up this late any more, but Shannon and I are going through and old filing cabinet.

I wanted to see this movie when it first came out, not cause I thought it would be that good, but I was just curious...

It's fairly cheesy, but I'm kind of sucked in. Tornados are destroying my old stomping grounds, Los Angeles. Hopefully the Fatburger in Westwood survived.

Saturday, May 14, 2005

Dwyane Wade Rocks

Watching NBA tonight. This is about as early as I can watch the NBA now. Watching an amazing performance from Dwyane Wade from my alma mater, Marquette (thank heaven we're not the Gold).

Without Shaq to draw the defense, Wade has put up 40 points in a playoff game and there are still six minutes left. Incredible.

Random Visitors

Just FYI, the most popular searches bringing visitors to this blog most recently are:

Market 117
Miranda Kahn
Kimberly Houk

Odd random ones are:
frank vascellaro, face lift
dougie houser

Friday, May 13, 2005

So We're Building A House

So after talking with a couple of builders and multiple banks, then deciding to put it off for a year, we've decided to take the plunge and build a house.

Move in will be next year, but the progress will become a regular off-topic, topic on the blog.

Freaky Friday

Here's a little about Friday the 13th for those of you who are curious.

The Waterboy

The Waterboy Posted by Hello

Just kidding Mike... you're no Adam Sandler. Meant to post this over the weekend. Thanks to the beautiful woman who shot this. That's Larry Foulk and Bill (big fan of the blog) Fischer in the background. A big nod to all 25 staffers who help out at "Race For The Cure" every year.

Thursday, May 12, 2005

Mission Accomplished

Congratulations my Pekin girls soccer team. With a 2-0 win over Woodruff, they have improved to 9-6-1 and guaranteed the first ever winning season by a PCHS soccer team girls or boys.

At Least You Still Work In Teams Here

Medialine's Open Line has an interesting discussion on a story broken by the TV blog Lost Remote.

KRON was one of the stations I was able to get via cable when I lived in Monterey. They were a great station, well respected around the country and an NBC affiliate at the time. Now they're an independent (former Granite station KNTV switched "technically" from the ABC our market in Monterey, to San Francisco's NBC knocking KRON to indy status) that is apparently hitting rough times.

Wednesday, May 11, 2005

New Reporter and Live Streaming

Welcome to the newest member of the WMBD radio staff, Shaun Newell who was doing afternoons today. If I've got it right, I believe he comes to us from WEAI and WLDS in Jacksonville, IL.

And props to the station for the live streaming.

Dave Dahl, The Blogger

Welcome to the blogosphere to 1470 WMBD radio's Dave Dahl. I've known Dave since I moved to Peoria the first time. Great newsman and has a sick memory. For those of you back in the day, I've got two words: license plates.

Tuesday, May 10, 2005

"24" update

By the way... "24" rocked again last night. Only two more episodes left until I need to buy earlier seasons and as I may have stated before, that's not really my thing.

The New Walmart

It used to be back in the day at WMBD, when you needed to get the dreaded man on the street (MOS) sound, you stood outside the Peoria Walmart, which for those of you unfamiliar with the geography is a stones throw away from the station.

Saw Liza and Brian from 31 shooting their cell phone story at the courthouse plaza today. Crews from all three stations are regulars down there for sound, especially starting this time of year as the lunch carts are out and many downtown workers are taking their lunch breaks outside. The plaza, it seems, is the new Walmart.

Thanks 25 Sports

Thanks to Josh, Jesse and Lee at 25 for covering a big milestone for the Pekin Girls soccer team. After eight consecutive losing seasons, we're one win away from guaranteeing a winning campaign. Kurt and John at 31 covered our program setting a season high for wins last year and while I recognize the "hook" for both stations was the fact that I used to work on air at both, my girls have worked very hard the past two years and any coverage they can get is a bonus.

Sunday, May 08, 2005

Kudos to HOI

Caught most of HOI's 5:30 today. Good Mother's Day stuff...

Enjoyed Brock's piece on the military mom. As I had mentioned in a previous post... with the line "a simple breakfast..." he was able to build in a little suprise (obviously more if the package was viewed as a stand alone). The shooter did a good job with sequences in a story where there wasn't a lot to shoot.

Josh's piece on the quads was solid. Wrote well to video, good phrase turning (for lack of a better term) and he found just the right spots to break up his track with nats. He's been doing this a lot lately and it really hummed in this piece.

Audio Buffet

Steve Tarter writes about your weekend radio choices.

Happy Mother's Day

Happy Mother's Day to all the moms out there. I've linked to the Journal Star executive sports editor Kirk Wessler's column today. I've gotten to know Kirk through playing in the Gus Macker media division, but it is a non-sports column of his that has really struck a chord with me.

Saturday, May 07, 2005


Having once worked as an anchor, I can share this and laugh.

Q: How many news anchors does it take to screw in a light bulb?
A: Just one to hold the bulb, while the world revolves around him/her.

Thursday, May 05, 2005

Thanks WHOI

Thanks to I think it was Jill from WHOI for making it out to the Pekin-Richwoods game. We lost 9-1, but my girls won a moral victory of sorts becoming the first team to score on the Knights after they posted six shutouts in a row.

Boom Goes The Dynamite

For most working in TV, this is a little old, but it is still spreading across the country and becoming something of an urban legend (much more so than the rough weathercast from last year).

As not to pile on, I won't link to it, but you can search the words "boom goes the dynamite" and see for yourself. An aspiring sports broadcaster has a rough go of it his first time out. Despite not being to identify the players in a highlight, he manages to remember his "Sports Centeresque phrase" and utter the following:

"Later, he gets the rebound, passes it to the man, shoots it, and boom goes the dynamite." Update: Jon gives us the exact quote.
As Steve Scheuer put it, thankfully the internet wasn't around when he was at TV 10. I feel the same, as I'm sure many do about their college work. This kid has declined interviews, which I respect, but man... he could really cash in.

He could trademark the phrase, sell t-shirts, maybe do one of those "This is Sportscenter" commercials, be a pitchman for something... the phrase is catching fire.

Lemons to lemonade!

Taking Stock

The Peoria Pundit posts to articles about the companies that own some of our local stations.

I'm Off Today

Slept in till 7:30. Very exciting, although I had actually wanted to watch some of the morning shows... but sleep is good too. So are days off.

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

Watching Sweeps

Jeff at Peoria Television Stations is watching what the stations in MARKET 117 are doing for May sweeps. To be honest, I'd like to do something like this, but I have neither the time nor the energy, so my hat is off to him. My only issue is every report seems to get 4 or 5 stars, but there's no context. Even a report he had problems with got 4 stars.

Obviously he and I are watching from different perspectives, but aside from something being informative and for lack of a better phrase, "fair and balanced" I'm hoping for some or all of the following:

Did the reporter give us a pretty clear begining, middle and end and especially an end and not just their tag.

Did they write to what's there or not there in the video?

Did the reporter build in a suprise instead of "posting on a billboard in giant letters" what the story is about in the intro and again in the first line of the package?

Did the reporter use nat sound to build a certain amount of rhythm into the piece?

Did the reporter use compelling soundbites to tell the story?

In an earlier post, I shared some of KGO reporter Wayne Freedman's thoughts about story telling, but what I'm looking for is probably an easier starting point.

While I was at WEEK, Jim Garrott brought in a reporter (Boyd Hupert) and photographer (Jonathan Malat) from his old station, KARE, in Minneapolis to do a workshop for us. Most times when you take part in something like that, you're kind of jazzed for a couple of weeks, then it fades. But that session stuck with me throughout the rest of my time there and influences the way I watch stories even now.

Expanding The "Where Are They Now" Section

I started the "where are they now" posts with on air people I worked with, those who were across town at the time. Expanded to people who worked here while I was working in corporate TV. I'll eventually add people who were on air before my time and some readers have already sent leads to that end.

At Mark's party over the weekend, former WMBD director Eric Peterson (an admitted fan of the blog, thanks E) suggested I expand to non on air folks. I keep in touch with as many behind the scenes people as I do on air types, but as I explained to Eric, people who take an on air job give up a certain amount of anonymity to begin with... you can find many of them via Google whether or not I did the posts. If you're a producer, director or photog, you don't necessarily sign up for that if that makes sense.

I've decided when I do talk or exchange e-mail with non on air people, that if they'd like to be contacted, I will add them to the list. If that's you and you've been reading, but not posting, please drop me an e-mail or post a comment and let's catch up!

Sorry For The Lack Of Posts

Readership of MARKET 117 has been quite a bit higher in recent weeks. No posts the past few days due to soccer and being out of town for work. Posting will resume tonight. Quick hello to Scott Unes who checked in with a comment. Thanks for stopping by.

Sunday, May 01, 2005

Welcome Jesse

Welcome to Jesse Chavez, the new 5pm producer at WEEK. Jesse comes to us after stops in Phoenix, LA and Chicago.

He Blinded Me With Science

After interviewing inventor Dean Kamen, Stever Tarter suggests science related program might have it's own niche in today's television.

Apparently WMBD has sent out a release plugging "what's new"... the gas check which Bill Flick reported on Friday and the Video Vault segment which goes back into the station archives. Shannon actually really liked that segment, as the first one on Thursday brought back memories of Dickson Mounds.

Steve recently played a word association game with Bradley comm seniors...

And finally he reports that John Malone has resurfaced on weekends on River Country.

Strolling Down Memory Lane

It used to be for me going to Mark's party meant stumbling down memory lane... not anymore.

I'd like to go to sleep, but I'm wide awake. Just got home. In the interests of people being weary of talking to me for fear it ends up here, I'll keep this general.

Got to catch up with some old friends tonight and got to know some news ones a little better. It's funny because as much as the faces change, the stories don't. And it never ceases to amaze me how well bonded people become from sharing in the experience of working in this medium.

To be honest, a part of me was jealous of the younger people in the group, cause they're enjoying a time that for me was one of the best of my life... so much fun... endless possibilities... and eventually brought Shannon and me together.