Archive for November, 2008

The Dick Summer Connection – November 30, 2008

Saturday, November 29th, 2008
Turkeys are dumb. They even walk up to you and say, “Gobble, gobble.” And so…of course…we do. If turkeys looked like rabbits, with big eyes and funny little tails, and took bunny- funny  hops like the Easter Bunny, Thanksgiving might have a different kind of centerpiece. But they don’t. And the rest…as they say…is history.  

It was on Thanksgiving a number of years ago, that I started the Men Are Saints Appeal. (The M.A.S. Appeal) on WNBC Radio in New York.  Here’s the point: Men are seldom given credit for our sensitivity, intelligence and selfless behavior. For example…here in the Northeast, Thanksgiving is usually celebrated on a cold day. So where do we men traditionally encourage our women to spend the day? In the warmest room in the house which, of course, is the kitchen. We, on the other hand, in a manly display of selfless courage…throw ourselves in front of the tv screen to protect our loved ones from the terrible effects of the cathode rays that squirt out of the picture tube… especially during commercials for “erectile dysfunction” medications which, if not used under a doctor’s HMO plan, can cause us to get permanently stuck in the “upright position” so we have to walk bent over at all social functions till next March. And how much credit do we get for that traditional self sacrifice? Right! None!

How often have you seen a relatively innocent Louie-Louie Generation man at a raunchy bar go over to a woman he has never even met and invite her to the safety of his apartment to get her out of that dangerous environment? And what reward do we get? Right again. None.

But we soldier on as we always have, even in the face of this shameful lack of appreciation. That’s the basis of the M.A.S. Appeal.
As you can imagine, the M.A.S. Appeal is frequently not well received by certain people with more evolved levels of social sensitivity and mostly higher voices. But as a member of the Louie-Louie Generation, I have to keep in mind the words of Big Louie, His Own Bad Self…”If your eyes hurt after you drink a cup of coffee, next time remember to take the spoon out of the cup first.” (Actually, he said, “There are just some things a guy can’t control”…but for some reason possibly related to my cold, my eyes are hurting right at the moment.)

And it is true that I sometimes lose control of parts of me…like my left eyebrow which always seems to flip up when my Lady Wonder Wench walks into a room wearing some of those little outfits she calls “quite comfortable.” And occasionally under those circumstances, my fingers absolutely refuse to behave themselves, no matter where I try not to put them.

My theory is that a guy’s brain swims in a sea of testosterone, which absorbs some of the shock of getting hit in the head by baseballs, Yanni’s music, and high levels of excess verbal communication. Testosterone, you will remember, is a preservative. And a preservative stops stuff like germs and fungi from maturing. So testosterone is an anti-maturing chemical. And I have a lot of it…which is probably the main reason for the M.A.S. Appeal.

Seriously, scientists with degrees from actual schools (as opposed to Internet schools which will give you a degree for life experience and your bank account id plus password) agree that the shorter your pointer finger is compared to your ring finger, the more testosterone you have. Fortunately, some truly caring and lovely ladies I have known have come up with better… although I guess slightly less scientific… tests. (I’m willing to bet that roughly 100% of you guys are now comparing the length of your ring finger with the length of your pointer finger. This could cause a new wave of Email offers to lengthen and thicken ring fingers if the news ever leaks out.)

Everybody likes Thanksgiving. But I must admit that I liked it a lot more before the discovery of salmonella poisoning…which is what the government says you get from turkeys. I think what happens is that tiny little turkey dwelling salmon get into your blood and swim up stream to your brain to spawn…which causes you to completely lose control of your higher reasoning functions, which is what makes you rush to the mall to go shopping.

That’s why I always warned my radio listeners to cook their turkey in an oven turned up to stun for at least two quarters of the football game, then give a piece to the dog and watch closely for signs of any fishy symptoms…like he goes chasing after a lot of little salmon that only he can see.
 
Dick’s Details Quiz – All answers are in the current podcast at www.dicksummer.com
1- What kind of cold does Wonder Wench say I have?
2- Who was the recording artist who made the statement “Hellooo Baaaby” the mating call heard in singles bars coast to coast?
3- What’s the big peanut butter promotion Wendy’s is missing out on?
 
Scoring:
3 – right – Turkey, mashed potatoes & gravy, pumpkin pie with whipped cream and slightly hardened apple cider.
2 – right – Turkey tv dinner.
1 – right – Peanut butter and jelly sandwich.
0 – right – Something that tastes like chicken.
Lots of things to be thankful for this year…again.  My Lady Wonder Wench is safe at home after a terrible accident. I have family and friends who put up with me. I have a job I enjoy. I have this blog and PodCast…(and by the way, thank you…some of you have been telling friends about it and the counter numbers are going up). I have a nice place to live, my own little airplane, and a pile of dreams, some of which still might come true.

Sometimes I’m almost embarrassed by how good things are for me. But as Big Louie, His Own Bad Self always says…”huh?” I’ll bet most of you who are lucky enough to be Americans know some of that feeling.
 

If you think Thanksgiving should be about more than just turkey and gravy, here’s a suggestion: Send a note to “An American Soldier”- Walter Reed Army Hospital – 6900 Georgia Ave. N.W. Washington, D.C. 20307. Just say “Thanks.”

As Captain Kangaroo always used to say…”Thanks is a magic word.” By the way, maybe you didn’t know about Capt. Kangaroo. His real name was Bob Keeshan. Before he became “The Captain” he was a U.S. Marine Sergeant. And he rates a salute. Sgt. Keeshan was awarded the Navy Cross for heroism exhibited in the initial landing at Iwo Jima in World War 2.

Thanks.

Dick Summer 
Ps- What does Christmas/Hanukkah/Solstice/Quanza mean to you ? I’d like to use some of your thoughts next week.  
My email is Dick@DickSummer.com

 


The Dick Summer Connection – November 23, 2008

Saturday, November 22nd, 2008

Nighttime is the playpen of worldly delights. It’s full of fantasies of someone beautiful showing up unexpectedly…breathing heavily… and then the sound of delicately perfumed black lace dropping to the floor. You hear strange soft noises in the attic in the middle of the night. And there’s no one else around so you have unlimited access to all the oreos in the closet. Night…is all right.

Morning…is not. As far as I’m concerned it’s appropriate that the other meaning of the word morning is what you do at a funeral. I take pride in the fact that I have a pretty good wake-r upper in my head. Very seldom does my alarm clock actually go off. I can wake up pretty much when I need to…right on time. But this was one of the few days that actually started with the annoying sound of my alarm clock. I call my alarm clock the “Dawn Cracker”…because I usually set it for noon, or the crack of dawn whichever comes first. That’s ok because I work out of my home office, and it doesn’t really matter what time I start or stop work…as long as I get the job done.

I used to really enjoy doing late night radio…It was a very special feeling…sitting in a small studio with just a desk lamp, a couple of turntables, a mic and a telephone, talking to the world on WBZ in Boston…then later on from studio 2b on the second floor of the RCA building on WNBC in New York. I had a name for that feeling in my head. I called it my “Huddle.” It was like I was the quarterback of a team of listeners who were gathered around me for mutual protection. We had a goal…the goal was simply making it through the night.

But for various reasons…mostly having to do with making a living…I also did early morning radio. Hideous. The only person on the planet who looks good early in the morning is my Lady Wonder Wench. That’s why the good Lord made it so hard for us to get our eyes open early in the morning. When we first get up, our hair looks like we stuck a wet toe in a hot socket… our faces are a little off center from sleeping on a lumpy pillow, we have stubble sticking out of our chins, no make up…what a mess.

If you actually saw each other clearly early in the morning, the price of brown paper bags of exactly your head size, and the head size of your nearest and dearest would soar beyond the means of most middle class families. When they talk about traffic snarls in the morning rush hour, that doesn’t just refer to too many cars on the road, it also refers to the expressions on the driver’s faces.

I don’t deal well with mornings. Take things like breakfast. Who wants a cereal that goes snap pop and crack when you pour milk on it. I want a cereal that just lies there in the bowl and gets nice and soggy…quietly. The cereal makers don’t understand that. They talk about how when you feed your kid their cereal, your kid will have lots of energy. WRONG. You want to find a cereal to feed your kid that will sap his energy…calm him down. Those idiots pour sugar all over kid’s cereal. Kids are wild enough without giving them a sugar over dose. What are those people thinking ? Parents don’t want even more energetic kids. We want a little peace and quiet.

I had to take the Long Island Rail Road to work for a while. Every morning, I rode in an over crowded coach looking at what seemed like millions of other guys who were, like me, all desperately hoping the coffee would kick in soon. It was a look of loathing. And the feeling was mutual I’m sure.

Nothing interesting ever happens in the morning. If you’re not scrambling to get to work, you’re out jogging. I have never seen a jogger with a smile on his face. Have you ? Everything is in a hurry in the morning. I hate that. Why should we hurry ? We’re all going to get hit with an asteroid eventually anyway. And who says we have to get all dressed up, and start work at exactly 9 am. Why should we get all dressed up in the first place. That’s the morning attitude. The night time attitude is more like, “It’s not what you wear, it’s how you take it off that counts.” I like that a lot better.

Dick’s Details Quiz – All answers are available in the current podcast at www.DickSummer.com

 1- What’s the smelliest problem astronauts have reported from space ?

2- How will we know when the “Mother Ship” has landed ?

3- What’s the biggest problem that Bolivia has with its Coast Guard ?

Remember – Dick’s Details take your mind off your mind.

Got some really wonderful E-mails this week. By the way, my E-mail address is Dick@DickSummer.comif you’d like to get in touch. Here’s part of a note from a former member of my radio “huddle”…proud Podcast Participant Charlie K…he says, “There’s a lady with whom I shared the front seat of a 62 Fairlane, listening to you doing Lovin Touch on the air. She was a high school sweetheart of 3 and a half years who I let get away when we went our separate ways to “grow up” during college. It took us 40 years to correct that mistake. Today, we’re back together for “the rest of the run.” I’ll be sharing the holidays with her in North Carolina, listening to your Lovin Touch cd together…just like old times.” It’s a necessary process…growing up. And it’s ok as long as you don’t over do it. There’s a story called “Growing Up” in that Lovin Touch Personal Audio CD. It’s in the current podcast. If you like it, you can just keep the podcast. Or if you want a fresh copy, just go back to the icon on the opening page of this web page, and click on the Lovin Touch icon.

Let me leave you with the words of “Big Louie, his own bad self…the chief mustard cutter of the Louie – Louie generation.” He says, “Don’t let them tell you it’s always darkest before dawn. It’s really darkest when you don’t pay your electric bill.”

Thursday, November 20th, 2008

Dick-ette – November 20, 2008

I get a magazine called Men’s Health. It features lots of stories about pushups, bar bells, and crunches. It makes me feel good to read about these exercises. And it beats actually doing any of them. Most of the exercising I actually do inivolves beating around the bush, jumping to conclusions, climbing walls, passing the buck and pushing my luck. Besides all these exhausting and time consuming activities, I have to actually get a lot of work done this week. So I’m going to bend over backwards to get a new podcast up this weekend…but if I don’t… please try www.dicksummer.com/podcast/latest 

Thanks. Dick

Tuesday, November 18th, 2008

Dick-ette – (as in a little something from Dick.) November 18, 2008

How come none of these politicians can explain why a “slight tax increase” costs me $500, and a “substantial tax cut” saves me thirty cents ? I think the Screw Up Fairy has visited Washington again. I’m sorry about neglecting the new Blog/Podcast this past weekend. Life is slowly returning to a calmer state…simple total chaos. So there’ll be another one soon. Meanwhile, remember the words of Big Louie…his own bad self…the Chief Mustard Cutter of the Louie- Louie Generation:

“It’s true that all men are animals. But some make better pets than others.”

Oh yeah…if you have a moment, click here: www.DickSummer.com/podcast/latest

Thursday, November 13th, 2008

Dick-ette – As in a little something from Dick:

My day job is requiring some actual work this week, so I may not be able to get a pod-cast up this weekend. But I want all Louie-Louie Generation folks to have these words of advice from Big Louie, His Own Bad Self…the Chief Mustard Cutter of the Louie-Louie Generation: “If you notice that your body is beginning to make the same noises as your coffee maker, remember the best way to prevent sagging is just eat till the wrinkles fill out.”

Try this on for size: www.DickSummer.com/podcast/latest

The Dick Summer Connection – November 9, 2008

Saturday, November 8th, 2008

I’m sitting here with my bathrobe on, in my big, comfortable, black leather pappa chair in my living room… And I’m wearing my brand new Indiana Jones fedora. As soon as I put it on, the music started in my head. Dum da dum dahh…dum da dahhh ! I like Indiana Jones. He’s not a super hero…he doesn’t have mysterious powers…he’s an ordinary guy like me, only he carries a whip, and he knows stuff about archeology, and girls write “I love you” for him on their eyelids.

Ok…so he’s not… really… that much …like me. This is actually a replacement for the original Indy hat I bought. You know the expression…”So and so is leaving a pair of very big shoes to fill?” There may be a lesson in that. The original hat I bought turned out to be a half size too big for me…and my ego.

But Indiana Jones IS the perfect Louie-Louie generation guy. When that movie music isn’t playing in the background, I’m sure Indy occasionally hums “Loui-Loui…oooohh, oooohh…we gotta go.” He’s no kid, and he definitely has the Louie-Louie attitude. It’s summed up in one line out of his latest movie about the crystal skull. The bad guys are closing in…and he says…”This used to be easier.” Then he puts on his hat, grabs his whip…and starts to “do it to it.”

Indy doesn’t wear a fancy cape and leotard like Superman. Indy’s not faster than a speeding bullet. In fact he runs kinda funny. I think if he tried leaping tall buildings with a single bound he’d probably trip over the porch steps…kinda like me. And that’s a good thing. In this neighborhood, if a guy dressed like Superman showed up wearing a blue jump suit and a flowing red cape, the neighbors would grab their kids and forbid them to go out into the street.

Indy doesn’t wear a fancy spider suit like Spider Man either… slinging magic webs so he can swing from building to building. He wears an old beaten up leather jacket like mine, and a floppy fedora…like mine…or actually mine is like his I guess. Except I threw out the little plastic logo they stuck in the hatband. That made me feel more like I was putting on the Davy Crocket coon skin cap I had a long time ago.

Indy even has a regular job. He’s a teacher. All in all…he makes an ordinary Louie Louie generation guy like me feel like… with a little more exercise every day…maybe…who knows?

There’s something almost mysterious about how putting that hat on makes you feel. It gives you a kind of self confidence…like you can do anything…the kind of special strength you can’t get from other people…it wells up from within… It’s like the kind of feeling that motivational books and videos that cost only three payments of $99.95 promise you. And if you call within 5 minutes without even taking time to change your mind or your underwear, they give you free shipping worth $20. But you know what…it makes you want to have fun. And my Lady Wonder Wench says it looks sharp on me. Especially when I tilt it kind of rake-ishly to the left.

It’s actually not much of a jump for Harrison Ford to play Indiana Jones. He really is a pilot, and he owns a very nice helicopter. It’s a lot more expensive than my airplane. And he actually does hero stuff with it. A year or so ago, some kid got lost in a desert, and Ford was out flying his chopper, and found the kid…and saved him. But I always wondered what must have been going on in the kid’s mind… he’s wandering around lost in the desert for days, scared spitless and probably getting a little crazy, and he hears a chopper landing behind him…he turns around and looks…and out gets… Indiana Jones. Talk about needing to talk to your shrink for years to come.

Henry is the Indiana Jones character’s real name…Henry Jones Jr. But obviously, Henry doesn’t cut it for a mover and shaker’s name. Think about it. Movers and shakers need appropriate names. If Hitler’s name had been Skippy, how many people would have taken him seriously. Skippy Schicklegruber says burn the books and invade Poland. On the other hand if the peanut butter company had used the name Hitler…that wouldn’t have worked either. Think of the commercials. “Hitler peanut butter. For guys who want to grow a little mustache and screw up the world.” Then there was Indiana Jones’s younger brother Dow… who became a Wall Street honcho. Dow Jones. I’m sorry. I won’t do that again. This Indy hat makes me feel like I can even survive the hate emails that I’ll get for that one. Especially if I put on my Ray Ban pilot sunglasses. By the way my email address is Dick@DickSummer.com

Dick’s Details Quiz – All answers are in the current podcast at www.DickSummer.com

1- What’s in the palm of your hand that your wife or girlfriend (or both) might find objectionable ?

2- How does Oprah say you can have a quick sex change, without an operation ?

3- What does Harley – Davidson have to do with ketchup ?

There’s something really nasty on my mind these nights. I spent a long time in the broadcasting business, and I really loved being on the air. I loved it. The radio business is going down and out, and standard tv isn’t far behind. And it’s taking the jobs of just about all the people I knew… for all these years. Here’s a note from Proud Podcast Participant Bob C. who is a radio and tv executive, and a friend of mine. It says in part: “I’m installing my replacement here at work. The new automation system has just put 5 of my people out of their jobs. Even Big Louie would have a hard time smiling knowing that the work I am doing today will most likely put me on the unemployment line too. We have laid off 12 people, and there are more layoffs to come. We have canceled our weekend news, and our 10 PM news ends next week.”

Been there, done that…way too many times. I put a story about how that feels in the new Night Connections 2 Personal Audio cd. It’s called “Not Again.” If it hits home to you, you can just keep the podcast. Or if you want a fresh copy, just download it from the Night Connections 2 icon on the opening page of this website. What ever works for you.

It’s tough…losing your job. Especially for Louie-Louie Generation guys. Louie-Louie Ladies are tougher than we are in some ways. And that’s good. When I got fired for the last time at WPIX in New York, my Lady Wonder Wench spent a lot of time telling me that I was quote” THE Dick Summer.” That’s when she bought me the bathrobe I’m wearing right now…the name she had embroidered on it is “The Whiz.” It still makes me stand up a little straighter when I put it on. And that’s a good idea… when you’re feeling a little beaten…just make it a point to stand up as tall as you can. It helps you feel a little better.

You know by now, that I am a seriously maturity challenged Louie-Louie generation guy. I suppose that’s one reason putting on this Indiana Jones hat makes me feel like…hey…with a little more exercise…maybe…who knows. But more importantly. When it came, and I put it on, my Lady hit me with those big shiny blues, and gave me that thousand watt Wonder Wenchy smile…and she said…hey…that looks good on you. dum da dum dum…da da daahhh.

 

 

 

The Dick Summer Connection – November 2, 2008

Saturday, November 1st, 2008

My sister in law Peggy is a smart, independent, successful, Louie-Louie generation woman. And a very good softball player. In fact I’d say the biggest reason Peggy wasn’t drafted by the New York Mets is that like most women she won’t do the basic things a major league ball player must do. She won’t scratch and spit. So much potential female major league talent goes down the drain because of the simple things women won’t do. For example, if a woman were playing third base and a pop fly came her way just as a baby was falling from the stands, the woman would catch the kid, even if the bases were loaded and she could easily have made an unassisted double play at third because the runners were in motion. Women simply have no baseball discipline.

All the women in my family are a challenge to feminists who don’t admit there’s any difference between men and women. Peggy is no exception. She’s very comfortable dividing the domestic work load into two sections…The way she puts it is the Pink jobs are for the women, and the Blue jobs are for the non-women. Peggy very kindly came down here to help when my Lady Wonder Wench got hurt. Here’s how she set things up. Cooking is a pink job, opening the applesauce jar is blue, supervising table manners is pink, doing the dishes is blue. Lugging the laundry basket down to the washing machine is blue… sorting the clothes, washing them and folding them is pink…lugging the finished product upstairs is blue…putting them in the drawers is pink. Taking out the garbage and anything involving a chain saw or the tv remote…very blue all the way. Social planning, neighborhood news gathering, and anything cultural…bright pink. So…Oprah may not approve…but I don’t care…it works. And it’s not complicated. I don’t like complicated. I don’t like being confused.

That’s one of the good things about being a Louie-Louie generation guy. We don’t get confused about the kind of articles you see in some of the young guy’s magazine…like…”What Does It Really Mean To Be A Man In Today’s Society.”

Come on. You’ve got to be kidding. Louie-Louie Generation guys aren’t in the least bit confused. We know that women are a lot more than just soft guys. I mean…we appreciate the soft…a lot. And we understand that it’s a useless, impossible and a senseless waste of time trying to understand women. But just loving them is really…good. What it boils down to is that we’re simple…and women aren’t. Understand that and get over it. Men aren’t from Mars, and women aren’t from Venus. We’re both from Good ol’ Mother Earth. Deal with it.

Deal with the fact that men are competitive and women are cooperative. That’s why smart women tend to take a deep breath, give each other girly smiles, and roll their eyes while they watch us go for the bragging rights.

Now believe me… Louie-Louie Generation guys are as competitive as pimple people generation guys. Pimple people guys may have six pack abs, lots of long wavy hair, and all night stamina…but they simply don’t have our worldly-ness …our over all charm…plus some of us have a little money…all of which of course helps make us the partners of choice for some of the girls next door, certain super-models, and the occasional porn-star.

A big difference between Louie-Louie Generation guys and young guys is that we know when to compete, and when to cooperate, and they get…confused. For example, when the lights are low, and the music is soft and sweet, and the dress code is informal and minimal…young guys sometimes forget that those special three little words a woman wants to hear aren’t… “We’re Number One.” I mean…there are times when you really ought to turn off your cell phone…or at least don’t make outgoing calls.

Big Louie, his own bad self, the Chief Mustard Cutter of the Louie-Louie generation nailed it pretty well I think when he said, “Heros and winners aren’t always the same guys.”

Dick’s Details Quiz – All answers are in the current podcast at www.dicksummer.com/podcast/latest

1- What have some of the guys at the gym been guilty of over doing lately ?

2- Which of your fingers doesn’t have a name ?

3- What does it mean if you answer your phone and all you hear is heavy breathing ?

I’ve got to admit that Louie-Louie Generation guys don’t always get the girl. Sometimes…for no apparent reason…the Pimple People generation guys win. There’s a story about that in the new Night Connections 2 Personal Audio Cd. It’s called The Lawyer Lady and the Hunk. Sometimes it’s just hard to understand what women do.

I don’t usually mention the comments from the blog on the website…I know you’re perfectly capable of reading them… but this has to be an exception. It came in last week. It says in part…”You did a podcast about step parents, and you had an anonymous reply about package deals. Well…that was my dad. He’s actually my step dad. He came into my life when I was a self centered, hormone raging 10 year old who wanted what she wanted when she wanted it. I introduced him to people as “my mother’s husband.” I told him “I’ve been without a father since I was two, and I don’t need one now.” I hardly noticed…at all the big times in my life…like when I graduated from high school…he was there. I got mad at him and moved out when I was 18. I really didn’t care about anything or anyone but myself. It took me a long time to realize…that when he agreed to marry mom, he accepted me as well…and he loved us both…in different ways of course, but he really loved us. I have step children now, and when I deal with them, I try to remember what my dad did for me. I love them like I gave birth to them. So take some advice from a step kid and a step mom. “Support your partner. Love the kids like they were your flesh and blood. Stand by them. Support them to the best of your abilities.” And I really need to say just one more thing…Thanks dad.

I didn’t want you to miss this comment.