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Jabbering With Fisher About Post Radio

   This is all inside baseball, but Marc Fisher and I recently exchanged some thoughts about the Post's new venture into radio. Marc has a new blog, as you know, and he posts about 47 new items every day, and doesn't spend his whole time blogging in draft mode and then forgetting to post the material later. (Seriously all my best writing is stuff that languishes in the laptop because I can't remember to post it. Also there is that annoying category of material, "Too Good For The Blog." We're talking masterpieces of reasoning and insight. If the really good stuff were to get on the blog, it would distort expectations.)

    Here is the first third or so of the RawFisher/Achenblog exchange, and you can read the whole thing by going to RawFisher:

   Achenbach: Marc -- can I call you Marc? -- or do I have to call you by your new first name, "Raw"? -- I am hoping you can give a quick briefing on the significance of the Post starting a radio station (and all-news WTOP shifting to FM, and so on). Are we thrilled by this? Is this our big break, finally, after languishing for years as ink-stained wretches in the dead-tree industry? Or are we skeptical, because of complex reasons involving things like signal strength and the moribunditude of the AM band? Do we really have enough time and creative energy to produce all that radio programming? And are listeners hungry for objective journalism over the airwaves, or will they demand that we fulminate? Sorry for the MIRVed email.

Fisher: Lieber Herr Professor Achenbach!

Welcome to the wonderful world of radio, as we bravely charge into the wonders of multimedia synergy. (Oh, we already did that? It's oh-so-90s? Ah yes, AOL and Time Warner and all that. Right.)

Well, here we go, hacking our way into the past! Yes, that's the ticket. And no, I'm not being snide. For the Washington Post to go into radio--and AM radio to boot--is deliciously retro, and that's the right move because when old media get smacked around by new technologies, they almost always find their future in the discard pile. So while the whole media landscape is aflutter over how micro-niched and atomized popular culture is becoming, we grab lustily for AM radio and revisit its power to reach nearly everyone. There is a demographic problem here, in that the average age of AM listeners may exceed even that of print newspaper readers, but Washington Post Radio will be both on 1500 AM and on 107.7 FM, which you can't really hear here in Washington, but booms out like a beacon of yore across much of northern and central Virginia. The folks in Charlottesville will love this.

So what will we do on Washington Post Radio? Supposedly, we'll offer listeners something in between the headline machine of all-news radio and the serious reportage of National Public Radio. Ideally, we'll be newsy, fun, chatty, funny and insightful. More likely, we'll have some of that and some, well, amateurish analysis from news people who really don't know radio. Bottom line: We don't know what we'll sound like quite yet, because we haven't got the programming ready. But the idea of letting listeners in the D.C. area hear the voices of the people they've been reading for years is a good one--building personalities is a major step toward building loyalty to Washington Post journalism.

But you're right to ask about priorities and time, because reporters need to be able to get out of the building and sink into stories, and if they're busy prepping an appearance on radio or TV, they're not out collecting facts and scenes. So what's the answer?

Achenbach: All I know is, you're going to be bigger than Howard Stern.

Seriously my first thought on this radio gig is, shouldn't we get a bigger signal? Our own satellite, maybe? If we're going to do it, why not aim for total global radio domination? The other day on WTEM, Mr. Tony and the sports guys were saying that if WTOP leaves for FM, the AM band will be even more of a dirt road in the middle of nowhere. But that presupposes that WaPoRad at 1500 will have fewer listeners than WTOP. I say in 6 months we're the new kings of local radio and we can't AFFORD to pause in our radio broadcasting duties to do something as time-consuming as report and write stories. Marc, you're going to have a microphone surgically installed into your sternum.

[Click here to read more.]

By Joel Achenbach  |  January 23, 2006; 8:04 AM ET
 
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Comments

Marc also knows how to do this cool thing where a blog item says, "To be continued" or something like that. His blog is full of bells and whistles. I think his blog even has scratch-and-sniff elements. His blog has detachable coupons. I'm so jealous. His blog has music videos starring Marc, I mean basically he sings and dances right there on the screen. Why read a blog item when a blogger will actually PERFORM it for you? Jeepers I'm like totally vermillion with envy.

Posted by: Achenbach | January 23, 2006 8:15 AM | Report abuse

Well, Boss, Marc doesn't have Lindo Loo, Nani, Curmudgeon, bc, Reader, Achenfan, Sara, jw, RD, and all the other lovable characters who inhabit Achenblog. Regardless of his bells-and-whistles, I think I'll stick around here.

Posted by: slyness | January 23, 2006 8:26 AM | Report abuse

Well it looks like the Post has figured out that circulation numbers are down because everyone in the DC area is stuck in traffic. Radio is certainly the best way to serve that public. There's a reason XM was born here.

[I get FM 107.7 really well in No Va, but it seemed funny to me that at times (most notably on the Beltway near the huge antenna in Merrifield) it comes in much better on the AM station.]

I'll be happy to have a new choice on the dial and look forward to meeting "in person" the folks I read every day.

Posted by: TBG | January 23, 2006 8:29 AM | Report abuse

Hey, any minute now, everyone could pack up and leave. There'll be one final comment posted from Achenfan: "Party's over."

Posted by: Achenbach | January 23, 2006 8:29 AM | Report abuse

Meanwhile I posed a question a few minutes ago on the Zucchini item, essentially this: Can a woman change a man? That may have to become a microkit.

Posted by: Achenbach | January 23, 2006 8:30 AM | Report abuse

Like many of your items, Joel, this one is totally above me. I have no idea who Marc is? As for radio, I do miss that, a lot. When I was younger, it was the music, now I believe I would appreciate the talk. I don't believe you're going out of style, Joel, yours is a valuable service, and I say that seriously. As to the question, can a woman change a man, that's a tough call. I think the first example of that was with Adam and Eve. She did get him to eat the apple, and it was downhill from that point on.

Ben writes some very hurtful remarks on the blog, I hope he gets to feel better soon.

Posted by: Cassandra S | January 23, 2006 8:57 AM | Report abuse

We'll never get the WaPo radio signal in San Antonio, but I fell out of my chair at the breakfast table, LOL, to see that on Page 3 of our S.A. Life section today the San Antonio Express-News ran your piece on the Dalai Lama in full (when, for national coverage, so many other AP, Wapo or NYT articles are lopped somewhere in the middle ). I do believe this is the first time I've read *any* of your writing, Joel, in our local paper. Big B&W photo of the Dalai Lama, too.

To rephrase your question from your very late posting to the Zucchini Kit, I believe the question really is--can Individual #1 change Individual #2 if Individual #2 doesn't want to be changed? (Let's throw out gender.)

This was a h**l or heck of a problem in Weight Watchers that I saw time and again. The true successes came from within those with the desire to change themselves. A mother's pressure or guilt trips wouldn't do it, nor a spouse's cruel remarks, persistent pleading, bribes/rewards or any other of a number of psychological manipulation tricks one person can use on another.

Posted by: Loomis | January 23, 2006 8:59 AM | Report abuse

Eh, I post on Marc's blog from time to time (like today...).

"MIRVed email." - ha!

Isn't the Big Bang of the Blogosphere evidience enough for a public demand for fulmination?

Get with the program and find sponsors, guys. They can't keep you off the air if you Bring Money.

bc

Posted by: bc | January 23, 2006 9:13 AM | Report abuse

I am a married man who, on rare occasions, has had my maturity, sense of humor, personal grooming, cooking ability, taste in wallpaper, sartorial habits, driving skills, and general congnitive functioning questioned by my wife. The answer is no, a woman can't really change a man. But she can encourage and motivate the man to change himself by helping to establish something of value, such as a stable home, an environment of boundless love, and, of course, children. Unfortunately, this only works if nobody involved knows it's going on.

Posted by: RD Padouk | January 23, 2006 9:34 AM | Report abuse

Say it isn't so! The party's over? I can hear Nat King Cole right now.... and later Bobby Darin....

The party's over,
it's time to call it a day.
They've burst your pretty balloon
and taken the moon away.

The party's over.
the candles flicker and dim.
you danced and dreamed through the night
it seemed to be right
just being with him (Joel)

Now you must wake up,
all dreams must end.
Take off your make up, the party's over
My friend.

JOel, I heart radio. Especially older radio. We used to crank up the radio on Saturday nights to listen to music, mystery theater, cop calls, and LOWELL THOMAS! When Prairie Companion went TV, it wasn't as enjoyable as radio. Something mysterious and wonderful about hearing voices and trying to visualize persons, places and things.

No, we can't change anyone. Just ourselves. And then only if we really want to.

Posted by: Nani | January 23, 2006 9:40 AM | Report abuse

Vermillion is a red shade. Shouldn't you be viridian with envy?

Posted by: LP | January 23, 2006 9:59 AM | Report abuse

Ahhh, radio. In her first marriage, my sister married Tim, whose mother Jeanne was the niece of Lee DeForest--so sis married her 9th cousin. DeForest's story is well-told in Sir Harold Evans' book, "They Made America: Two Centuries of Innovators from the Steam Engine to the Search Engine."

Lee DeFOREST (1873-1961), inventor with over 300 patents in electronic communications, pioneer in radio broadcasting, and exhibitor of sound motion pictures in 1923. (Note: two lines of Porter)

Henry Swift DeFOREST (1833-1896) and Anna Margaret ROBBINS
Lee DeFOREST (b. 1798) and Cynthia Storrs SWIFT
Gideon DeFOREST (1765-1840) and Hannah BIRDSEYE (1773-1844)
Joseph DeFOREST (1731-1777) and Susannah MILLS
Pelatiah MILLS and Martha CHAPMAN
Peter MILLS, Jr. and Joanna PORTER
John PORTER III and Joanna GAYLORD
John PORTER, Jr. and Mary STANLEY
John PORTER and Anna WHITE
Robert WHITE (d. 1617) and Bridget ALLGAR (b. 1562)

Cynthia Storrs SWIFT and Lee DeFOREST
George SWIFT and Eunice STORRS
Benjamin STORRS and Olive MACKRALL
Huckins STORRS and Eunice PORTER
Experience PORTER and Abigail WILLIAMS
Samuel PORTER and Hannah STANLEY
John PORTER (d. 1648) and ANNA WHITE (b. 1600)
Robert WHITE (d. 1617) and Bridget ALLGAR (b. 1562)


Genealogy research done by distant cousin in Washington state (...don't know if he'd want to be named).

Posted by: Loomis | January 23, 2006 10:11 AM | Report abuse

To prove that a woman can change a man, Curmudgeon will show his wife the post where he claimed that eating something was better than sex (presumably with wife, not self or other). The cruise was truly nice. Please give us follow up after the conversation with Mrs. C.

Also:

Curm's reply to Ben suggests that Curm's earlier claim that eating was better than sex with his wife is correct. Only Curm would know. Curb your enthusiasm, Mr. C. We love you for what you are, not what you eat. Also, a tip: please don't bring your wife into this blog--or are you willing to share your original comparison with her.
Just some helpful advice from a wise gal.

Re Gene's tour de force: let's not lapse into comparisons. Gene's was Pulitzer quality. Joel A's recent work does not need to be compared with that

Posted by: omnigasm | Jan 23, 2006 10:19:43 AM | Permalink

Posted by: omnigasm | January 23, 2006 10:24 AM | Report abuse

Vermillion's not green?????????????? This changes everything.
It's weird that I can function at all, not even knowing colors.
Gene's piece was truly brilliant and incomparable to anything else I've read in the Post in a while. It caused much buzz in the magazine for weeks prior to publication. And I'm glad that word on the street is that readers appreciated how great it was. I wonder what Mr. Zucchini thinks. Maybe in a couple of years there will be Part 2 of the Zucchini story. He'll be running a Vegas casino then, like Andy Garcia or DeNiro.

Posted by: Achenbach | January 23, 2006 10:32 AM | Report abuse

I'm glad to know that Gene W's article caused a buzz at the magazine. It's so much fun to be surrounded by talent. One can only hope some of it rubs off (I'm speaking for myself here, not making any comments about anyone else at the magazine).

We had a writer here in my office who left for a couple of years and then came back (lots of us do that here). It was such a pleasure when I edited his first article after he returned. Still waiting for his talent to rub off on me, though.

Posted by: TBG | January 23, 2006 10:40 AM | Report abuse

The last story I've read that compared to the Great Zucchini was Gene's story about going to Alaska that was published last spring. For a guy whose schtick is humor, Weingarten is incredibly subtle, human, and humane. These two are Pulitzer quality.

Posted by: slyness | January 23, 2006 10:47 AM | Report abuse

JA's red/green colorblind???

Yanno, WaPoRad is too darn close to CONELRAD, we need a new pseudo-acronym. But if you think about it, JA, radio could really hold hands with blogging -- just use speech-to-text software and post it automatically. No fuss, no muss, and the 'lopers would actually have to speak in public.

Posted by: Scottynuke | January 23, 2006 11:03 AM | Report abuse

Uh, food being better than sex was something of a writerly hyperbolic metaphor (you know, like "the most fun you can have with your pants on," etc., is a bit of a metaphor). And anyway, I don't recollect writing that food was better than sex with my wife, just food was better than sex in general. (Of course, at my age, I'm just working from memory anyway.)

Jeez, people, Joel's statement was perfectly comprehensible when he said he was "vermillion with envy." Now you've got out the color wheels trying to parse whether vermillion was the correct choice. Let the man write, dammit.

(A piece of advice, Joel: watch out for hyperbole and figures of speech involving food and sex. These have become shark-filled waters.)

(N.B.: "Shark-filled waters" was a figure of speech. To the best of my knowledge, there are no actual sharks in the boodle. And whereas most sharks will eat pretty much anything, they are known to be attracted to the smell of hyperbole in the water. A concentration of as a little as 1.7 ppb (parts per billion) of hyperbole in the waters of the Potomac will draw a 12-foot Mako shark from as far away as the Great Barrier Reef.)

(Recognizing, of course, that the Great Barrier Reef is not actually much of a barrier, since water and various sealife seem to go in and out of it pretty freely. It's "greatness," of course, is purely subjective, as I'll be the first to admit. And it isn't one single reef, but an entire reef system of approximately 2,800 reefs that give the appearance of being one large, monolithic reeflike unit. OK, we all clear on that now? Can I go back to "The Price Is Right"? Carry on.)

Posted by: Curmudgeon | January 23, 2006 11:08 AM | Report abuse

Is moribunditude worse than cummerbunditude?

Can a woman change to a man? Oh yes, definitely. I have photographed the procedure in fact. But more than the physical changes and hormone treatments is involved. You're got to learn to talk about sports, learn how to spit, and most of all stop crossing your legs at the knees! Oh, wait. Can a woman change a man, not change INTO a man? Um, no.

Posted by: kurosawaguy | January 23, 2006 11:10 AM | Report abuse

re: vermillion

A sympathetic editor could easily imagine that when you have turned green to the nth degree of green and then you keep going, you might end up on the other side of the color wheel and be, indeed, vermillion with envy. What is *beyond* green? Well, red.

I have always had a problem with "mauve" and "chartreuse"--I learn what they look like and then I forget; I just cannot keep the image in my head.

Posted by: Reader | January 23, 2006 11:12 AM | Report abuse

Reader... just remember that you're not likely to see someone turn mauve with envy.

Posted by: TBG | January 23, 2006 11:16 AM | Report abuse

Well, according to my (ancient) dictionary, vermilion is bright orange red. But how about verdigris, or virid (bright green) or viridescent, all of which are green?

Posted by: slyness | January 23, 2006 11:22 AM | Report abuse

I'm a little afraid of what they'll find if they check back on The Great Zucchini in a few years.

And Joel, you need a new first name, like Raw has over there on his blog. (Broadcasters change their names all the time, by the way, so it'd get you going in radio mode.)

Posted by: Bayou Self | January 23, 2006 11:22 AM | Report abuse

Just as a side note, as with most WaPo Magazine features, Gene will be chatting today at 1 PM EST on "TGZ".

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/discussion/2006/01/19/DI2006011902464.html

bc

Posted by: bc | January 23, 2006 11:23 AM | Report abuse

S. Nuke:

It was hard, but you have surpassed Achen Fan for being the most obsequious, boot-licking (figuratively, of course), fawning member of this blog vis-a-vis its proprietor. Congratulations, Mr. Nuke.

You must be as old as this gal if you remember CONELRAD. hhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeThere is no way to translate into letters that memorable sound. You must be over 50, and obviously still kicking!!!! More power to you.

Posted by: Golconda | January 23, 2006 11:34 AM | Report abuse

What a great thought BSelf, a radio nom de tune for JA! I hear "Greaseman" is not in use at the moment. Or maybe something all new and shiny, completely shorn of association with his present persona: "Rick Studly" "Percival Mauve-Finchley" "Dread Pirate Roberts" or, no wait- "Deborah Howell". That ought to light up the call in lines!

Posted by: kurosawaguy | January 23, 2006 11:38 AM | Report abuse

How many psychiatrists does it take to change a light bulb? Only one, but it really has to want to change.

I prefer to view myself as trainable, rather than something that needs to be changed. I just learn very slowly.

In nearly twenty years of marriage, I have learned to put the seat down.

I am still working on putting breakfast dishes in the dishwasher.

I have given up on learning the right way to fold socks.

Posted by: yellojkt | January 23, 2006 11:38 AM | Report abuse

Golconda;

Over 50? Let's not bring my hat size into this, please.

K-guy, I think "Vic Vermillion" would be the only appropriate on-air monniker.

Posted by: Scottynuke | January 23, 2006 11:47 AM | Report abuse

Maybe the question that needs to be asked is, Will Anyone listen?

Posted by: Joe D. | January 23, 2006 11:56 AM | Report abuse

Reader writes:
"What is *beyond* green? Well, red."

Reader, what is the meaning of "beyond"? Feel free to be Clintonesque in your answer, if you wish.

Remember your "Primary Colors"...?(Anonymous was Joel Klein, if I'm not mistaken?) They're red, blue and yellow.

Secondary Colors (wonder if Klein will write a sequel?): green, purple, and orange.

Bayou Self says he's color-blind. Oh, do I have a color-blind story or... "How I Learned to Love Biology."

BTW: I have a way to tie together Friday's Boodle--Mudge's posts about his cruise, Reader's selling of Girl Scout cookies, and Cassandra's remarks about racism, in addition to seeing reclusive Austin, Texas film director Terrence Malick's film on Sunday, "New World" (and 'Loper, if you're going to appropriate a living person's name as a handle, you could have at least spelled it correctly. Geez. Loser. I see the fake Malick post was deleted soon after it was posted): the history of sugar.

Posted by: Loomis | January 23, 2006 11:58 AM | Report abuse

About Gene, he wrote another classic in 1993 called The First Father, about Bill Clinton's little-known biological father -- in which he revealed that Clinton had a secret half-brother. It was an amazing scoop.

Posted by: Achenbach | January 23, 2006 12:01 PM | Report abuse

Maybe it's just the jet lag talking -- and I realize that the Dalai Lama would never be so uncompassionate as to point out the following -- but:
I thought Golconda and Scottynuke were the same person?

[Now that I know I'll be leaving town soon, I've Thrown Caution to the Wind. Yep, I've done my dash. But it's not too late for the rest of you: Save Yourselves!]

And here is my daily obsequious comment:
"do I have to call you by your new first name, 'Raw'?" HA!! And again: HA!!!!

Posted by: Tom fan | January 23, 2006 12:04 PM | Report abuse

Good morning, everyone. Got 2 minutes. "The Great Zucchini" was absolutely brilliant. It's huge. Curmudgeon, loved your cruise story, but then I'm the type of person who actually enjoyed viewing slides of other people's vacations (it's the running commentary that's priceless). My wife has provided her self as an example of the virtues of organization, promptness, and writing thank-you's. I've done my best to follow her example. Beyond that, I still do a multitude of things that annoy her, even after nearly 20 years.

2 minutes up. Cheers.

Posted by: CowTown | January 23, 2006 12:05 PM | Report abuse

Serious Boodling Out of Order on my part. Boodle lag.

[I think pretty much any comment posted after an Achenbach comment constitutes Boodling Out of Order.]

[There ya go -- more obsequiousness.]

Posted by: Tom fan | January 23, 2006 12:13 PM | Report abuse

Tom fan:

I am sure all will join me in giving you a 3-day free pass to say anything you please, with no blowback, sniveling, recriminations, ruminations, cogitations, back-biting, sucking up, slurring, over-reacting, extemporizing, giggling, etc., about anything. Jet lag, you know.

You deserve this courtesy. You have been missed by some. Things have gotten out of hand a bit in your absence. But that's another story....

Posted by: Golconda | January 23, 2006 12:20 PM | Report abuse

I remember that Clinton story. It was great. Didn't know Gene W had written it; that was before he became my journalism hero.

Posted by: TBG | January 23, 2006 12:23 PM | Report abuse

Dear Cow - That timed out at 30 seconds, at best. You left the boodle sucking air for 1:30. For shame!

For Joel's air name, the only thing I've got so far is a one-word term that sounds studly, but is also something of a negative term in the world of print journalism.

I remain color-blind.

Posted by: Bayou Self | January 23, 2006 12:26 PM | Report abuse

Another excerpt from the Fisher/Achenbach dialogue that I thought was especially pithy:

ACHENBACH: "...You say people don't like monopolies: What kind of shaggy, bean-sprout-chewing, love-bead-wearing freaks are you hanging around with these days, Marc? Thanks for the bulletin from the ashram. Americans are huge supporters of monopolies and near-monopolies (Microsoft, Wal-Mart, the Republican Party)."

Posted by: Curmudgeon | January 23, 2006 12:32 PM | Report abuse

Achenfan, welcome back. We expect a full travelogue. Curmudgeon set a new standard. I'm in South Florida and am online only via the wonders of wireless at Starbucks -- but I think they're about to kick me out of here. While I'm gone, I'll trust that everyone will behave, and that includes not responding when trolls attack. Nothing good can come of it.

For the record, it's about 80 degrees here. Sunny. It's possible I won't return. If we don't speak again, nice knowin' you folks!!!!! [Vanishes into swamps like some Hiaasen character]

Posted by: Achenbach | January 23, 2006 12:34 PM | Report abuse

What does he mean by "trolls"? "Attack"? Have we had one today?

Posted by: FachenA | January 23, 2006 12:37 PM | Report abuse

On this, All Praise Gene Day, I should note that long before he wrote his column he (and Shroder) ran a little Sunday mag in Miami called Tropic, where he ran stories like Zucchini almost every week. Tropic was killed by the Herald for business reasons. We should figure out a way to post old Tropic stories here, by Blais and Dorschner et al.

Posted by: Achenbach | January 23, 2006 12:38 PM | Report abuse

I would probably change that to "Shroder (and Gene) ran a little Sunday mag" -- but perhaps I'm a little biased.

Posted by: Tom fan | January 23, 2006 12:43 PM | Report abuse

Oh, and thanks for the welcome back, Achenbach.

It's true, no travelogue of mine could ever compete with Curmudgeon's (although, personally, I have my doubts as to whether "Curmudgeon" actually *went* on a cruise). (Throwing caution to the wind again -- I really must do this more often.)

I will say this: We managed to find a wonderful apartment, very well located, with a huge porch. (It was promoted as a "terrace," but I will always refer to it as the porch -- but not THE Porch, of course. We have since found out that, because of Hong Kong's air pollution, fog, rain, and humidity, we will probably only be able to use the porch two days a year.)

Among the other noteworthy events: I accidentally gave up coffee for several days -- I was constantly drinking tea, and one evening I realized I hadn't had any coffee that day, so I decided to abstain the next day as well, and then the next (took it one day at a time, as recommended by AA). It worked out nicely, given that Starbucks coffee is more expensive there than it is here (and you just feel so self-indulgent when you ask for a tall coffee and they say, "That'll be twenty-five dollars, please" -- Hong Kong dollars, but still). Sushi was really cheap by comparison; Chinese food, even cheaper. Actually, it seemed to me that pretty much every non-Starbucks product in Hong Kong was cheap by U.S. standards.

I'm hoping that later on I'll be able to make an intelligent comment about something other than Starbucks and sushi. Maybe after I've had another cup of coffee . . .

Posted by: Achen- and Tom fan | January 23, 2006 1:08 PM | Report abuse

Isn't the exchange such that your coffee cost $3.50?

Oh and welcome back.

Posted by: omnigood | January 23, 2006 1:32 PM | Report abuse

SCC:exchange rate

ack

Posted by: omnigood | January 23, 2006 1:33 PM | Report abuse

Joel, you know I am with you on the Tropic Magazine project. Let's see, I could quit my job and spend every day at the library, searching through the archives, printing/scanning/retyping the stories, posting them on the internet, providing links etc. etc.--that's all feasible except for the "quit my job" part.

On the other hand, I have never given up hope that Tropic could return. Business reasons! Hmph! Hire better ad salesmen! How hard can it be? There is so much money in South Florida; it is one of the hottest economic regions in the country, and we can afford excellence. In my opinion.

Posted by: Reader | January 23, 2006 1:37 PM | Report abuse

Something like that, omni. 'Twould be cheap at half the price!

[I'm talking plain ol' drip coffee here -- not an extra-hot-soy-no-foam-decaf latte with green and purple sprinkles on top or anything like that.]

Posted by: Achenfan | January 23, 2006 1:44 PM | Report abuse

Achen/Tom Fan,

Welcome back! We must schedule a BPH before you leave us for good.

And isn't Chinese food in Hong Kong just called food?

Posted by: TBG | January 23, 2006 1:49 PM | Report abuse

I only drink two kinds of coffee (and rarely at that): Espresso and Brazilian. And I almost always pay $0.00 for the Brazilian.

Posted by: omnigood | January 23, 2006 1:51 PM | Report abuse

BOO.

I second that TBG

And "And isn't Chinese food in Hong Kong just called food?" hahahah.

Posted by: omnigood | January 23, 2006 1:52 PM | Report abuse

TBG, Omni, Achenfan, jw, mo, etc.

How about a BPH on the first Tuesday in February (the 7th)?

The second Tuesday's out, for obvious reasons...

bc

Posted by: bc | January 23, 2006 2:02 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, TBG. You're right -- Chinese food *is* just "food" in Hong Kong. I actually ate a lot of other types of food while I was there, too -- Japanese, Korean, Thai, British pub food, etc.

The thing about ethnic restaurants in Hong Kong (and by "ethnic" I mean non-Western, non-Chinese, er, I mean non-"food," restaurants) is that you actually feel you're eating a meal in Japan, Korea, Thailand, or wherever, rather than in a Japanese/Korean/Thai restaurant that's been adapted for local tastes, as often seems to happen in the U.S. and other Western countries. I have a particular fondness for Korean food (can't get enough of that bibimbop [sp?]), so it was as though I'd died and gone to Heaven.

(It's funny, the first meal we ate when we got back to the U.S. was at our local Chinese restaurant. I'm really going to miss that place.)

And yes, I'm definitely up for BPH before I go. There probably won't be any BPHs to be had in Hong Kong.

Posted by: Achenfan | January 23, 2006 2:03 PM | Report abuse

BPH on the 7th? I'm there, dude. Heh . . . heh heh heh . . . heh heh.

Posted by: Achenfan | January 23, 2006 2:05 PM | Report abuse

On our birthdays, we'd wake to find a gift at our place at the breakfast table; Mother would fix our favorite meal for supper (mine was spareribs, so Dad prepared my b'day meal outside on the grill), and bake a cake with the appropriate number of candles. We didn't have "entertainment" catered in, but Dad would make shadow pictures on the wall with his hands, perform yo-yo tricks, and the highlight of the evening, Dad would play La Donna Mobile on our old upright piano. That was the one and only piece he ever learned to play. And no matter how much we begged, he would only play it on our birthday. I still have his sheet music, yellowed with antiquity. This is pretty much what I do for the G-kids'b-days, except my yo-yoing is pretty lousy, so I twirl my old baton from my highschool majorette days.

Posted by: Nani | January 23, 2006 2:09 PM | Report abuse

Good to see you Dreamer and the fans. Hope getting settled in your current exotic locale has been fun and will continue to be fun. This is the only way to really explore and understand a country and a people.

You know the best thing about the Dalai Lama? That he laughs so wonderfully. Religious leadership often stike me as not quite human, too pontifical (pontificating). The really good religious leaders, maybe that should be all leaders, seem to have an intimate connection to not just their own humanity but every mans. Maybe that is why people like Billy Graham, John Paul II, Desmond Tutu, and the Dalai Lama, transcend their own particular religious beliefs and reach all of us.

Posted by: dr | January 23, 2006 2:18 PM | Report abuse

A BPH on the 7th is a simply capital idea! Count me in.

And though it's been said, many times, many ways...
Welcome back, Achenfan!

And though it's also been said, many other times, in perhaps not so many ways...
Nani's g-kids are incredibly fortunate to have her around.

Posted by: Scottynuke | January 23, 2006 2:18 PM | Report abuse

OK.. BPH on Feb 7. (I can't believe you don't want to spend Valentine's Day with your Achenbuddies.)

That said... how many more boodlers can we get there? The location is central (McCormick & Schmick's on K St), the food is at CHEAP happy hour prices and the company is, well... superb. (And it gets more superb as the evening progresses and the Yuenglings flow.)

Posted by: TBG | January 23, 2006 2:22 PM | Report abuse

Well, then.

BPH starting at - 5 PM(?) - on February 7th at The Usual Location.

Yay!

bc

Posted by: bc | January 23, 2006 2:33 PM | Report abuse

As I said, count me in.

Posted by: Scottynuke | January 23, 2006 2:36 PM | Report abuse

Radio Programming Note: There could be a daily program devoted to the reading of the latest boodle. Yes, I said reading. That archaic spoken word thing. Words fly through the air via electricity and radio waves and stuff. It's how radio works. But the person doing the reading must be able to do a variety of voices, lending character and personality to the comments. Drop in brief bits of music here and there, sometimes to make a point and sometimes just to set a pace. And sound effects. Yes, there must be sound effects. Use an occasional foghorn and the sound of waves splashing during Curmudgeon's cruise report. A gong sound for an Asian feel during Hong Kong comments. The sound of chirping crickets during my posts. I'm sure you get the idea.

How about the sound of an espresso machine for Joel's posts from Starbucks? And the clatter of his keyboard. These posts always end with a brief sampling of "I got blistas on my fingas!"

Posted by: Bayou Self | January 23, 2006 2:38 PM | Report abuse

I so wish I could go to this BPH. Unfortunately Tuesdays are dreadful around the Padouk household. If any of you ever decide to do lunch, though, I'll be there.

Posted by: RD Padouk | January 23, 2006 2:42 PM | Report abuse

REading? Only good if it is spoken by a robovoice "reading" the quotes in a monotone.
There could be audioanimatronic action photos, based on real or figurative pics, of the poster. A different photo for a different name, er, 3 to 6 for personages such as Mrs. Achenfan.

Great idea, huH? eh?

Posted by: Golconda | January 23, 2006 2:45 PM | Report abuse

dr, add Mother Theresa to your list. I've clipped news photos of her, smiling at the babies and children all over the world she so loved and strived for. When she smiled, her entire face joined in, twinkling eyes mid wrinkles and crinkles.

scottynuke, thanks for the nice words.

Achenfan/Tom fan/Dreamer. Welcome Home! At least for awhile. You'll eventually be able to boodle in HK, won't you?

Curmudgeon, did you and the Missus trip the light fantastic while cruising? Did they have a good band? Did they play any songs that "go a little somethin like this"?

Cassandra - hey, I've been thinking about what you said a couple of boodles ago and when I get my thoughts straight and the time is right, I'll post something.

Posted by: Nani | January 23, 2006 2:52 PM | Report abuse

Bayou Self, great idea - I get dibs on horsey sound effects..."In rides Nani on her chestnut mare, Sarafina, clippity clop, whinny, snort, neigh...."

Posted by: Nani | January 23, 2006 3:01 PM | Report abuse

I get dibs on Kevin Kling's voice to represent me.

Posted by: CowTown | January 23, 2006 3:08 PM | Report abuse

Get James Earl Jones to do my voice. Not that I sound anything like him. It's the same logic that requires George Clooney to play me in the movie version of Beyond The Boodle.

Posted by: yellojkt | January 23, 2006 3:15 PM | Report abuse

I have dibs on Laura Bush's voice to represent me.

Posted by: melvin/a | January 23, 2006 3:17 PM | Report abuse

Reading aloud with character voices is something I do a good bit of. Too bad that I don't think this would ever really happen... plus, I suspect I already know what the Post would pay for such a position.

I am proud to say that I have read all 6 Harry Potter books out loud to my children (we read the first 4 twice) with character voices. Although Ron and Harry sound identical, and sound like me. I have found that you become most aware of Rowling's limitations as a writer of dialogue when you try to read her aloud, and discover that you often cannot tell who is speaking until you get to the attribution. It was particularly bad in the last book.

I really enjoyed Gilderoy Lockhart, though. I miss him. His voice was great.

Posted by: Tim | January 23, 2006 3:20 PM | Report abuse

Dibs on Michael Palin's voice!!!

Posted by: Scottynuke | January 23, 2006 3:20 PM | Report abuse

CowTown, I remember hearing Kevin Kling on NPR one night driving home and thought I would die laughing - and mostly because of his voice! Do you really sound like him? Kewl...

This whole WaPo radio thing still seems odd to me. Are they at least going to stream it over the internet? Or do they expect us in the hinterlands to travel to DC? And I'm afraid it could be like the talkies...I mean, do we really want to hear Joel and Gene W?

Posted by: mostlylurking | January 23, 2006 3:30 PM | Report abuse

Alas, Nani, there was no fantastic light tripping. For one thing, we had the late dinner seating, at 8:30, and it was usually 10:30 or later when we got up. By then we were all pretty tired (and Mrs. Curmudgeon is generally an early-to-bed type, though I'm a night owl). Also, I'm not exactly a Fred Astaire type. I'll dance (step, two, three four, box, two three four) on occasion.

Yes, there were several bars and lounges where four-piece combos played, and people danced. The demographic on this cruise was overwhelmingly people in their 50s and older (to my surprise, actually). There were DJs and groups that performed later at night up in the "Crow's Nest" lounge, and that might have catered to a younger demographic. One other lounge had a string quartet a few nights, and the Piano Bar (that was it's name), had a woman who sang and played the piano and was very good. In short, there was something for everybody, musically speaking.

I mentioned that the restaurant staff were mainly Indonesians, and the cabin staff were Filippino. Twice a month, there was a late evening show beginning at 10:45 that was a sort of talent show/amateur hour. One night it would be just the Indonesians, with individuals and groups singing, dancing, etc. Then two weeks later it would be the turn of the Filippinos. The ship's show band, lighting people, costumers, etc., helped out, so the shows were actually quite professional and very well done--it wasn't like what the phrase "amateur hour" suggests. (And it wasn't "The Gong Show," either.) The acts ranged from cultural songs and dance from the Indonesian (or Filippino) home cultures, to people singing modern songs to modern arrangements, either in English or in their native languages. The two highlights of the Indonesian show were a dance routine performed by about 20 Indonesians in special traditional costumes, called the Ramayama dance, about a good prince, Rama, his fiancee, Yama, and an evil White Monkey who steals the fiancee away. The rest of the men play locals who are first, terrorized by the Evil Monkey, and then witness the battle between the good prince and the Evil Monkey. I'm aware this all sounds silly, but in fact it was quite good. Immediately afterward, the same 20 or so did a quick costume change and came out again in regular modern casual clothes, but with small musical instruments made out of bamboo, that made a percussive sound when you shook them. Then they asked for audience volunteers, and called up on stage two girls [passengers] in their twenties, who were also given these bamboo instruments, and taught how to shake them. (I know, I know...leave me alone.) The one girl was a bit shy, but the other, an attractive blond who was, uh, ... nicely proportioned...was a naturally exuberant type (and may have enjoyed a refreshing beverage or two prior to the show) really got into it and made it a lot of fun. At any rate, the group then proceded to play on their bamboo instruments "America the Beautiful," and then (as Dave Barry says, I swear I'm not making this up) "My Way." Now, you just haven't lived until you've heard "My Way" performed on bamboo clackers by 20 smiling Indonesian men and two slightly typsy American girls. Despite how it may sound to some of you, it was actually a lot of fun (even for a crusty old curmudgeon like me, although by that time I probably had a couple of soda pops in me, too).

Posted by: Curmudgeon | January 23, 2006 3:31 PM | Report abuse

Dibs on Ruth Gordon's voice! And Frances McDormand (made up to look older of course) to play me if we go to film. This is getting exciting! There's no bizness like show bizness, like no bizness I know. Everything about it is appealing. Everything that traffic will allow. No where can you get that happy feeling, when you are stealing that extra bow. Take it away mo!!

Posted by: Nani | January 23, 2006 3:32 PM | Report abuse

mostlylurking

I sound nothing like Kevin Kling. My voice is alarmingly non-descript. I just like his voice, for the same reason you do.

Posted by: CowTown | January 23, 2006 3:32 PM | Report abuse

Nani, if you're going to have Ruth Gordon's voice, then I'll take Mia Farrow's. ("It has an undertaste; a chalky undertaste.")

But really, I'll bet you have a nicer voice than Ruth Gordon's. I just can't imagine you saying, "Roman, the carpet! BRAND new CAAARPET!!"

Posted by: Achenfan | January 23, 2006 3:38 PM | Report abuse

For my voice I want either Leonard Maltin or Alexander Scourby.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | January 23, 2006 3:44 PM | Report abuse

SCC: Leonard Graves, not Maltin.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | January 23, 2006 3:46 PM | Report abuse

Gotcha, CowTown. I sound just like my sister - and once, long ago, a young man told me I had a "grating" voice. But I'd say it's mostly non-descript, too. I'll take dibs on Andie McDowell...when I actually have the nerve to say something...

Posted by: mostlylurking | January 23, 2006 3:46 PM | Report abuse

I'll be voiced by Chicago radio legend Lyle Dean. That, or WDEL-Wilmington's Allan Loudell.

Golconda -- I'm sorry, but while the photos idea is cutting-edge stuff, it won't work. Ahem, it's radio.

Insert sound of chirping crickets here.

Posted by: Bayou Self | January 23, 2006 3:48 PM | Report abuse

banging pots and pans for the 'loper

Posted by: Anonymous | January 23, 2006 3:48 PM | Report abuse

Mudge writes:
"Also, I'm not exactly a Fred Astaire type. I'll dance (step, two, three four, box, two three four) on occasion."

Mudge,
Give me your hand and I'll have you "Dancing with the Stars."

Sunday we saw a great film trailer for the upcoming movie with Antonio Banderas, titled "Take the Lead."

Synopsis: Inspired by a true story, Antonio Banderas stars as internationally acclaimed ballroom dancer Pierre Dulane in the family drama "Take The Lead." The film revolves around a professional dancer who volunteers to teach in the New York City public school system. But when his classic methods clash with his students' hip hop instincts, he teams up with them to create a new style of dance and becomes their mentor in the process.

It's a great movie trailer--if you like dance. You can see it here:

http://movies.about.com/od/takethelead/a/takelead110305.htm

Posted by: Loomis | January 23, 2006 3:50 PM | Report abuse

I want to sound like a 1930s movie star. Or, rathah, movie stah.

Posted by: TBG | January 23, 2006 3:50 PM | Report abuse

Ah (ah so?), Achenfan, you'll change your tune once you hear me say "This man is so caLUMsy!"

Posted by: Nani | January 23, 2006 3:51 PM | Report abuse

I want John Cusack

Posted by: omnigoof | January 23, 2006 3:53 PM | Report abuse

SCC:I mean I want John Cusack to do my voice.

Posted by: omnigoof | January 23, 2006 3:54 PM | Report abuse

Nice save, omni. I can relate -- I heart John Cusack.

Posted by: Achenfan | January 23, 2006 3:55 PM | Report abuse

I just watched "Serendipity" again last night. I love John Cusack's ability to talk fast. I heart all his movies. But the real reason for owning this movie is Kate Beckinsale. Beautiful talented actress with English accent. Kills me everytime. Plus the story is killer.

Posted by: omnigood | January 23, 2006 4:01 PM | Report abuse

off topic once more, but if Joel's at the beach, he'll never know (just kidding, Boss)

THIS is why I need Achenblog: Phrases actually employed by an upper level manager where I work:

"Plans are iterative"
"Be a viscous layer between the parties"
"manage the risk"
"facilitate the dialog"
"shake the fruit loose from the tree"

and today's winner:
"develop a process of root-cause analysis"

Thanks for being there, Joel and friends.

Posted by: Reader | January 23, 2006 4:07 PM | Report abuse

TBG, dahling, Tallulah Bankhead's the gal for you. If you've never seen it, you must see her in Alfred Hitchcock's Lifeboat.

Posted by: Nani | January 23, 2006 4:08 PM | Report abuse

I gotta confess, I liked Kate in the original Underworld film.

And yes, I plan to see the sequel.

Now my secret's out.

bc

Posted by: bc | January 23, 2006 4:16 PM | Report abuse

And I'm just going to do my own voice.

It's not all that great, but I find I'm gernerally a lot less troublesome to work with than other actors.

bc

Posted by: bc | January 23, 2006 4:23 PM | Report abuse

BS,

I, ah, know it's radio.

Actually, the video audioanimatronic accompaniment is meant for the web, where we post, you know, because it is visual. The radio would serve as voicetrack for the personalized postings.

You savvy, eh?

Possible, but not when the Post is about the shut the door on this little blog.

Posted by: Golconda | January 23, 2006 4:25 PM | Report abuse

Reader,

You must work for a Beltway Bandito, judging by the jargon.

My favorite is--

"It's time for us to make a mesh of things," as in, collaborate.

Posted by: Jane Goldfarb | January 23, 2006 4:28 PM | Report abuse

With all the verbiage, have not heard your observations about the amount of overt sex acts on the Love Boat. Or were they just too old? You know what they say about cruisers....

Posted by: Question for Curmudgeon | January 23, 2006 4:31 PM | Report abuse

Ooh, I call Kathleen Turner's voice.
(I'm not bad, just drawn that way.....)

Posted by: LP | January 23, 2006 4:32 PM | Report abuse

BC, what you liked was Miz Kate in skin tight black leather in the first Underworld. She can act, see Cold Comfort Farm, but the vampin' flick and Van Helsing are just made for the $$$ and not worth your time.

Posted by: kurosawaguy | January 23, 2006 4:35 PM | Report abuse

k-guy, we're looking forward to your movie commentary at the Feb 7 BPH. Eh? Ehhhh? You'll be there, right?

Posted by: TBG | January 23, 2006 4:40 PM | Report abuse

What skin tight black leather. I can't get past her beautiful face and watching and listening to her speak.

Posted by: omnigood | January 23, 2006 4:44 PM | Report abuse

Dibs on the voice of: Michelle Pfeiffer

Posted by: Loomis | January 23, 2006 4:45 PM | Report abuse

I'd be lying if I said I didn't like the outfit, k-guy, but I liked the original Underworld in a goofy "Batman Returns" comic-book kinda way. I didn't see Cold Comfort Farm, and gave up on Van Helsing after about 20 minutes (bleah).

bc

Posted by: bc | January 23, 2006 4:50 PM | Report abuse

Loomis' choice reminds me that I found my kids watching "Grease II" this past weekend.

They didn't look like they liked what they were seeing. I didn't stop to watch.

bc

Posted by: bc | January 23, 2006 4:52 PM | Report abuse

i hope everyone has read gene's live chat transcript...

Posted by: ot | January 23, 2006 4:53 PM | Report abuse

Will there be a quiz?

Posted by: CowTown | January 23, 2006 4:59 PM | Report abuse

Pop!

Posted by: omnibad | January 23, 2006 5:03 PM | Report abuse

Sorry, ot, couldn't resist the snarky response. I thought it was interesting how people upbraided (is that a good word) Gene for his story early on in the chat, and how the language softened as the chat progressed (particularly after Eric Knaus makes an appearance in the chat). I also liked the interplay between Gene and the people from neighboring suburbs.

Posted by: CowTown | January 23, 2006 5:09 PM | Report abuse

your snarkiness made me laugh.

there are a million different ways to word a sentence - and sometimes they just come out the wrong way...

Posted by: ot | January 23, 2006 5:19 PM | Report abuse

It's killing me....I gotta know...Does anyone really find true value in this BLOG? I mean..come on...the B.O. is overwhelming!!!!!!!!!!!

Hey 'Mudge get back on the boat. ..."in the Navy you can da da da da da....."

I'm addicted to over the counter stool softeners.

Posted by: The Lonemule | January 23, 2006 5:35 PM | Report abuse

Eric was beaten by his father. I think we need to know more about that. I suspect that is where all his problems stem from - not the murders "across the hall".

Posted by: ot | January 23, 2006 5:40 PM | Report abuse

Does anyone else think Lonemule should be voiced by Don Rickles?

And Weingarten's chat transcript was simply amazing. As was the TGZ piece.

Posted by: Scottynuke | January 23, 2006 6:28 PM | Report abuse

C'mon Lonemule... say it, pleeeeeze?

Posted by: TBG | January 23, 2006 6:45 PM | Report abuse

I am appalled to say that I have heard my voice over recodring media, and the voice most likely to sound like me is Gene Weingarten's. But dibs on him to voice me, a female, on the radio.

Posted by: dr | January 23, 2006 7:07 PM | Report abuse

As to Gene's story, there are just not enough superlatives to apply to this story. The greatest art in the world illuminates a human truth, and touches us. This is art without a doubt.

Posted by: dr | January 23, 2006 7:14 PM | Report abuse

Nani, I'll bet it's a lot of fun around your house. An interesting birthday story.


I love the movie, Underworld, with Kate B. and I liked her in Cold Comfort Farm, very good actress.

Will someone tell me who Marc Fisher is?

Posted by: Cassandra S | January 23, 2006 9:17 PM | Report abuse

Cassandra, Marc Fisher is another blogger at WashingtonPost.com That is the extent of my knowledge.

Posted by: RD Padouk | January 23, 2006 9:39 PM | Report abuse

Marc Fisher caught my attention with this piece of writing (excerpts below)from 2004 about the Smithsonian's National Museum of the American Indian, since there were members of the Native group(s) (Weitchpec/Yurok/Hoopa) near Humboldt State going to the opening ceremonies.

Because Fisher's a metro columnist for the WaPo, I haven't followed him much, if any, since. (Funny, the rembrance of this op-ed is still very vivid in my mind.)
***

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A36831-2004Sep20.html

Poverty and substance abuse, domestic violence and unemployment -- the social ills that developed over generations of displacement, discrimination and disconnect from the wider society are mentioned, but not explored.

Rather, we get repetitive stories of survival, of how tribal customs and rituals are nourished today -- a painfully narrow prism through which to view American Indians.

The museum feels like a trade show in which each group of Indians gets space to sell its founding myth and favorite anecdotes of survival. ...

American history is a thrilling and disturbing sway from conflict to consensus and back again. But the contours of the battle between division and coalition are too often lost in the way history is taught today. Now, sadly, the Smithsonian, instead of synthesizing our stories, shirks its responsibility to give new generations of Americans the tools with which to ask the questions that could clear a path toward a more perfect union.

[A little bit wordy in the last 'graph and I'm not entirely sure what Fisher is trying to say in his summation. Was there ever consensus with Native Americans? Will Anglos ever achieve "a more perfect union" with the First Nations, or "The Naturals"?]

Posted by: Loomis | January 23, 2006 10:21 PM | Report abuse

The ads currently showing on this page:

Top banner: "Bethesda-Chevy Chase Restaurant Week Returns! 3-course dinner only $30 | 2-course lunch only $25" (Burst reads: "Enter to Win $1000 in restaurant certificates.")

Right-side banner: "Weight Watchers TurnAround: Discover weight loss freedom! Start today!"

I think I'll start after Restaurant Week. Unless I win the $1,000 worth of meals, that is.

Posted by: TBG | January 23, 2006 10:23 PM | Report abuse

Corrigenda: the rembrance
my memory

It's late. Eyes tired. Time for sleep.

Posted by: Loomis | January 23, 2006 10:24 PM | Report abuse

TBG,
What different ads we see.

Top banner: an ad for Denise Austins's "Fit Forever! Online...Skip the gym...Trim your thighs" ...two tanned fingers pointed to tanned taut thighs. Background: hot red pink

Right-side banner" Victoria's Secret...FREE SHIPPING and handling (next to a young voluptuous blonde in a sweater with deep cleavage and tremendous push-ups...you'da thunk that the North American Plate was meeting the Pacific Plate, geologically speaking) on U.S. orders of $100 or more. See site for details. Etc. More ad copy. Background: hot hot pink

Posted by: Loomis | January 23, 2006 10:35 PM | Report abuse

And may I just say that if I were interested in football at all, I'd be very happy (or terribly torn) at the prospect of seeing the Pittsburgh Steelers versus the Seattle Seahawks in the Superbowl. I grew up near Pittsburgh, and have now spent more years in Seattle than anywhere else. But I don't like football. A thousand apologies.

Posted by: mostlylurking | January 24, 2006 12:33 AM | Report abuse

dr, it seems commiserations are due to you, if I caught the Canadian election results correctly. Or maybe congratulations - not quite sure what a conservative Canadian stands for. Let us know.

Posted by: mostlylurking | January 24, 2006 12:35 AM | Report abuse

Thanks Loomis for the information, and thank you Padouk.

Posted by: Cassandra S | January 24, 2006 5:28 AM | Report abuse

Actually, after living in Central Virginia for several years, I can tell you that 107.7 isn't received well within about 30 miles of Charlottesville because of powerful interference from a local "smooth jazz" abomination on 107.5. Nor does the signal reach Richmond, WTOP's long-time promotions to that effect notwithstanding. However, I do often get 107.7 in the hillier parts of Staunton, VA, on the opposite side of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Distant reception is a funny thing.

Posted by: Scott | January 24, 2006 2:35 PM | Report abuse

What would WaPo have to put on airwaves to build a loyal listening audience? What topics need to be tackled?

Posted by: kid | January 24, 2006 10:34 PM | Report abuse

What would WaPo have to put on airwaves to build a loyal listening audience? What topics need to be tackled?

Posted by: kid | January 24, 2006 10:38 PM | Report abuse

What would WaPo have to put on airwaves to build a loyal listening audience? What topics need to be tackled?

Posted by: kid | January 24, 2006 10:39 PM | Report abuse

Doesn't anybody remember that the Post used to OWN WTOP, on AM as well as FM? Used to be the home of the Senators in the 60's, and was where Warner Wolf (where is he now) got started. Got sold about the same time the Post traded channel 9 to Gannett for a less valuable property in Detroit. Bitter irony to return to the same frequency when no one will listen.

Posted by: BS | January 26, 2006 1:50 PM | Report abuse

Doesn't anybody remember that the Post used to OWN WTOP, on AM as well as FM? Used to be the home of the Senators in the 60's, and was where Warner Wolf (where is he now) got started. Got sold about the same time the Post traded channel 9 to Gannett for a less valuable property in Detroit. Bitter irony to return to the same frequency when no one will listen.

Posted by: BS | January 26, 2006 1:50 PM | Report abuse

Radio voices I would like to see return are H.V.Kaltenborn, Edward R. Murrow, Alastair Cooke and Wm F. Buckley, but the last was more compelling on TV as he swallowed words whole and flung them, all wet and dripping with sardonic, out to his audience. Maybe the WP will come up with commentators as good at radio as Gene is in print.

Posted by: Shiloh | January 29, 2006 12:06 PM | Report abuse

Was the Vice President consuming alcohol at the time of the hunting accident?

I grew up with hunters, and I recall their stories about consuming large quantities of alcohol while hunting---to keep warm :-)

Alcohol and firearms are not a safe combination.

Posted by: Gerard Vignes | February 14, 2006 5:52 PM | Report abuse

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