The Fight Over My Watch

Pebble using words to tell the timeThe Pebble and I have become inseparable. Helaine has even caught me forgetfully wearing it to bed a few times.

The Pebble is a scratch for an itch I didn’t know I had.

I’m lucky to have it. Lots of people don’t have theirs.

Recently, a buzz has erupted from the Pebble have-nots. They’re worried about problems with production or software or firmware or the plastic injection molding process that’s keeping all the watches black so far. The company has turned less talkative.

The angst is understandable. The watch was supposed to have fully shipped in September.

Last night posted a teardown report saying the Pebble didn’t have low power Bluetooth capability as claimed. The buzz grew louder.

This morning Pebble released their unlikely, yet totally plausible, explanation. They’d used the right Bluetooth chips, which were marked incorrectly on purpose to get around some manufacturing paperwork snafu.

People are still pissed they don’t have their watches.

I hope Pebble survives. I really like mine.

Holy Crap Was I Skinny! Video Found As I Clean

PM Magazine/Buffalo hosts Jan Stager and Geoff Fox - circa 1980

Jan Stager and I hosted PM Magazine/Buffalo starting in September 1980. She was great. We don’t speak often enough, but remain friends.

Jan was from Kent, Ohio and had worked in Wasau and Green Bay, Wisconsin.

Me… well, you know.

This episode looks to be early on, possibly Fall 1980. I had been working in TV a matter of weeks or months by then!

I was so skinny the Buffalo Evening News’ TV critic said Chef Tell should fatten me up! Suggestion taken.

Also, please note the hair hat. That is not what my hair wants to do.

Here’s the way the show worked. Sometimes you had local stories, but most of the time the hosts introduced stories ‘on the reel’ from other stations.

We’d look at the list on totally unrelated stories scheduled on any given show, then find a location that might tie-in to some or all of them.


That was the goal.

The connections were often tenuous.

For each story, which of course we hadn’t seen, there’d be a suggested script. We’d look at the script, find out from the producer how much time was allotted, then ad lib our ‘ins-and-outs.’

TelePrompter? We don’t need no stinkin’ TelePrompter!

If You Ain’t Heard Your Name By This Time, It’s Probably Cause It Just Don’t Rhyme!

My messy office at home

Helaine has declared it spring cleaning time. There’s no excuse for me to be a slacker. After 23 years in this house we’ve accumulated a lot of crap. Everything must go!

OK–not everything, but if I haven’t looked at it over the last decade (or possibly two) it needs to be tossed. Fair enough.

The anti-intuitive part of cleaning and straightening is the first step is to make things messier! I have two wall units. I pulled most everything to the floor.

That’s tough love cleaning. It becomes easier to toss than return!

From time-to-time a discovery is made. Like most archaeological digs, most of what was unearthed in my room was worthless. Not everything!

I have audio tapes. Reel-to-reel. No player. I couldn’t toss them. OK–I tossed a few unlabeled boxes.

There were audio cassettes too. That’s where this afternoon’s KGB aircheck came from.

Tonight there are audio CDs and three gems I have to share. Indulge me.

Part of what made radio so special was the production of it all. The premier production element was (and is) the jingle.

I’ve written about and linked to the work of Jon Wolfert. He is the King of Jingles. Irrefutable. He is the keeper of the flame.

Alas, none of what I’m posting is his. I hope he doesn’t think I’m cheating.

First up the PAMS copyright notice. A jingle company could have printed its copyright notice on the label. Not PAMS. They chose to sing theirs!

Second, the iconic news opening from the Johnny Mann produced package that ran on stations consulted by Bill Drake (and a few others). After the third note, just say (in your ballsiest voice), “It’s twenty minutes before three. I’m Byron MacGregor, CKLW 20-20 News.”

Finally, a jingle company’s tribute to itself and its clients. This is the TM Song. This blog entry’s title, “If You Ain’t Heard Your Name By This Time, It’s Probably Cause It Just Don’t Rhyme!” is included in the lyrics!

I love this stuff. Radio and I were very close.

My Radio Inspiration

bobby ocean kgbAs a kid I wanted to be a disk jockey. There was something about having anonymity and fame simultaneously that appealed to teenage Geoff. My chance came in 1969. I stayed in radio 11 years.

There were many inspirations: Dan Ingram and Brucie on WABC, Murray the K on WINS, Joey Reynolds, Danny Nevereth and Bud Ballou on WKBW, Shadoe Stevens, J.J. Jeffrey and Dale Dorman on WRKO.

I’m not sure any of them had the same impact as this single aircheck from KGB in San Diego. It was a station I’d never heard live.

This was the late sixties and the “Drake format” was taking hold. All of a sudden disk jockeys were given structure and rules. What should have held them back actually made them more “boss.” KGB was the perfect example.

The aircheck was assembled in the hopes of winning the annual Gavin Awards Station of the Year. I’m not sure who actually won, but this presentation is so indelibly etched in my psyche I can still recite it word-for word.

If you make it to the end, you’ll hear a ridiculous amount of 1968 dollars being given away!

So Much I Can Taste It


Doppler and I were out a little while ago. We have a late night routine.

It’s a shame she doesn’t look up. It is a beautiful night. No Moon. Dark. Clear. Brilliant stars.

I can’t imagine anyone with a telescope not observing tonight.

Chilly too. The ground around my house is still snow covered.

This neighborhood is home to dozens of little streams and brooks. They’re running strong and high right now. I can hear Jepps Brook a few hundred yards away. That’s not the norm.

I crave spring so much I can taste it.

Trying To Get My Rig Together

When I decided to become a web developer I realized the only way to compete in a crowded marketplace was to offer websites with integrated video and photography. These are areas where I have expertise and many ‘devs’ do not. I’ve got a website video shoot Monday. My Canon 7D is primarily a still camera, […]

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I’m Watching QVC

Lisa Robertson is on my TV selling an initial tag leather bracelet. I’m not buying. This show isn’t aimed at me. Helaine has QVC on for much the same reason I watch MSNBC, noise. I usually don’t watch. Tonight, it has my rapt attention. I’m probably not going to say what you think. Wow. This […]

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Official Connecticut Snow Totals March 6-8, 2013

I post these with a bit of trepidation. Every time I do someone (usually many someones) writes to say it’s wrong for their town. Probably. Snow measurements are never exact (and I always wonder about totals to the 1/10th inch), but this is the best we’ve got. These numbers are from the National Weather Service, […]

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The Beautiful Pain In The Ass

Every snowstorm is different. Each has its own special features, based on temperature, wind and the like. Today’s is really unusual. Though the wind whipped as recently as Thursday midday, the last 18 hours has seen a move to nearly calm. The snow has fallen and stayed put, even in the tiniest and most precarious […]

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I’ve Seen This Storm Before

An admission. Other meteorologists remember storm details vividly. Not me. Storms are transients. I try not to get too attached. I used to be astounded by Dr. Mel’s ability in this regard. He remembered individual storms the way Pete Rose remembers individual pitches. It’s a skill set I don’t have. There are a few memorable […]

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