Archive for March, 2010

My Personal Space Ship

Saturday, March 27th, 2010


I’m sitting here in my big, comfortable, black leather poppa chair in my living room…and it feels like Capt. Kirk’s command seat. I told you about that nasty knee replacement operation I just had. It still hurts, but there’s no use beating a dead horse over spilt milk, so I’m just going to suck it up, grab a grin, and take command of my space ship again.

 When you think about it, our bodies are space ships…walking around on this strange blue planet, where all the life forms survive by killing and eating other life forms. We breathe the strange gas that surrounds the planet, and drink a chemical that’s stored in big holes on the planet’s surface, because a long time ago, our great, great, great, great grandparents came crawling out of those big holes, smeared some sun block on themselves, and lay out on the sand to sop up radiation from the nearest star. At least that’s what our scientists tell us.


Of course they’re the same scientists who tell us men have sex because these very small, totally insincere little guys wearing Speedos called sperm, fulfill our primitive drive to swim our genes down to the next generation. Which makes the guys who sell condoms and birth control pills just smile, and high five their buddies at the Viagra plant…which isn’t really  a plant. No. It’s a building…you can’t fool me. And speaking of condoms, they used to be in the back of the drug store, guarded by a suspicious pharmacist who you suspect will tell your mother on you…it doesn’t matter that you’re now 45 years old. Now, there right up next to the chewing gum at the cash register.


That could be really dangerous. I mean, suppose you’re in a hurry, and you grab the wrong package by mistake. It could be really embarrassing at a moment of looming lust. Well…maybe you could take a chance if it’s bubble gum. That whole process is chancy. If your viagral parts are asleep when they should be paying attention just once, and you never trust them again.


All us space ships are wandering around on this strange blue planet, doing and saying things that simply don’t make sense. We made up a language so we could communicate with each other…then we don’t pay any attention to the rules that WE MADE UP.


Look…WHY isn’t a micro chip the crumb in the bottom of a potato chip bag ? Why wouldn’t it work if you went out in a boat to fish for naval oranges ? There must be transvestite bears who live in the arctic. Why aren’t they called bi-polar bears ? And WHY doesn’t non-fat milk simply come from skinny cows?


Why can’t we ever admit we’re asleep ?  It’s 3AM and the phone rings, and you sincerely hope it’s a wrong number…but a familiar voice on the other end of the says, “Gee, I hope I didn’t wake you.” And you hear your own voice answer with something like, “No, no…I was awake. I was just up…reading the bible.”


We have certainly colonized this planet, and taught all of its creatures our ways. The camels in Hollywood Christmas pagents have silicone in their humps. I wouldn’t be surprised if some scientist is trying to cross a race horse with an elephant, so the horse-a-thant would always win by a nose. And how come if you want to get your blood pressure down you’ve got to exercise, which gets your blood pressure up ?


Dick’s Details Quiz…all answers are in the current podcast.


1-    What’s the matter with The Washington Monument ?

2-    Why can’t fish see when they’re out of water  ?

3-    What could you call a very sexy guy ?


Dick’s Details. They take your mind off your mind.


One of the things the smart guys in the white lab coats are always telling us is that water is necessary for life. That’s one of the things they always look for to decide if there’s life on other planets. I think that’s a mistake. We need water for our kind of life…because we were originally water creatures…according to more of those smart guys. But I figure, if creatures on other planets originally crawled out of sand, why would they need water ? Our smart guys always seem to forget that God has an unlimited supply of custard pies up His sleeve.


I’m a Pisces. I love water. It soothes me. I sometimes still really  like walking in the rain…or listening to it on the roof…with my Lady Wonder Wench. There’s a story called The Rain in the lovin touch personal audio cd. It’s in the current podcast.


It is a beautiful thing…loving a lady in the rain. And having her love keep you warm…and alive. If you like that story about the rain, just download it from the loving touch icon on the home page.


It’s good…sitting here in my Star Ship command chair…running my personal space ship. And I like being around the other personal space ships that are under Louie-Louie Generation commanders. We have our own language. You can hear it in advertising. In Louie-Louie Generation advertising you hear words like regularity…dentures…indegestion…insomnia…bladder relief. You never hear words like designer jeans, beer, beach vacations, skiing. But you know what ? That’s because most advertising is run by the pimple people. They don’t know that behind their backs…Louie-Louie Generation guys are the bed mates of choice for super models, porn stars, and all kinds of ladies in lingere…because we really like ladies…and treat them with a flair. And Louie-Louie Generation ladies know when it’s time to act like a lady, and when it’s time to drop the act…along with certain restrictive garments. And most of them have experience laughing, crying, cooking, and caring.


A Louie-Louie lady may give you her heart, her body, and her mind. But if you look closely, you’ll see quick smiles…flashes of memories are only hers. Hidden fantasies, unshared longings, past lovers secrets. The Pimple People would call that baggage from the past. How sad. That’s not baggage. That’s one of the things that makes us human.


That’s what Star Trek was really all about. The contrast between humanity and alien logic.


They scattered the ashes of the actor who played Scotty on the Star Ship Enterprise into outer space. For real. They did that. And I’m glad.


Hey Scotty…thanks for beaming me down here…to this beautiful blue planet…in my personal space ship…with the still painful but newly repaired knee. I love it here with my Louie-Louie Generation lady. She sleeps in my old t shirt when I sometimes have to be away over night. But when I’m home…she sleeps right here in my old Louie- Louie Generation arms.

Dickie Quickie – 3-26-10

Friday, March 26th, 2010

Please read the comments this week. They are especially telling. And you’re very welcome to leave your own of course.  Bruce Bradley and Dan Ingram were the two cleverest, fastest, funniest guys with whom I ever had the pleasure of working. Wm. B. Williams was the classiest. Al (Jazzbeaux) Collins created his own world. Ron…was just Ron. And that was just fine by me.

Dick Summer

Ron’s Room

Saturday, March 20th, 2010

I’m sitting here in my big, comfortable, black leather poppa chair in my living room, and I was about to ruminate with you ! Until I realized that ruminate is one of those weird words that fascinate me, because it doesn’t mean what it sounds like. Ruminate. I never met anybody who actually ate a room.  Laminate is another. Sounds like you just finished eating a lamb. I’m always having nutty mind swings like that with words. My radio career probably came about because of that. I think the good Lord was looking after me…keeping me locked up in a little studio, so I couldn’t hurt myself.

Reckless is another nutty word. A reckless driver is the kind of guy who wrecks cars. But reck-less sounds like he didn’t have any wrecks. How about a near miss. That really describes a near hit. If two planes had a near miss, that should mean they almost missed, but they didn’t.  Every few years, there are gubinatorial races in every state. But not one gub-inator is ever elected.

 Most radio disc jockeys have disjointed minds like mine. That’s why the good Lord keeps them locked up in those little studios. So they can’t hurt themselves. Ron Lundy was a big time New York disc jockey. He was a southern boy. I think he was from Mississippi. We worked together for a while at ABC radio in New York. Ron had a mind full of southern sunshine…and it flowed out in his voice. His voice made you feel comfortable, and warm…because that’s the way he was…comfortable and warm. 

 Ron and I weren’t close buddies, mostly because our schedules didn’t allow it. But I always looked forward to having a cup of coffee with him at the diner down the street, and talking shop. And I liked hearing him on the air. He was good. He was a top flight professional. And he was a gentleman.

 Gentleman is a non nutty word. It means exactly what it says. A gentle-man. My Dad was the smartest guy I ever knew. He taught my brothers and me to be gentlemen. And he taught by example. “Show is always better than tell,” is something he always said. And dad made a big distinction between the words “gentle” and “soft.” He said, “anybody can be soft, but it takes smarts and strength to be gentle.”

 Ron Lundy died the other day. I’m going to miss him. He had a good, full, successful life. And in a radio business that can be pretty cut-throat, I never heard a single nasty word about Ron. One reason for that was that I never heard a single nasty word FROM him.  

 Unless you’re a New Yorker, you probably never heard Ron. And that’s too bad, because you really missed a treat. Anybody can be a disc jockey. Mostly a disc jockey is just a guy with an un-naturaly deep voice, and a big ego, who becomes a little glue between the music and the commercials. Listening to most disc jockeys is about as exciting as biting into a piece of chewing gum that you started chewing yesterday. Mostly. But I’ve known some exceptions. William B. Williams, Allan Freed, Murray Kaufman, Al Collins, Dave Maynard, Rosko, Carl deSuze, Wally Phillips, Bruce Bradley, Allison Steele, Danny Ingrahm, Gene Klavan, Dee Finch…and… Ron for example. You probably remember some exceptions too. People who left a little smudge of themselves on your radio to keep you company when their shows were over. You’d believe it if one of those folks said, “I love you.” And the reason for that is…they did. They loved being with you. You could tell.

 Dick’s Details Quiz…all answers in the current podcast.

1-    What sleeping habit does my Lady Wonder Wench share with female dolphins ?

2-    What seems to happen to the sex lives of American women past the age of 26 ?

3-    What’s so good about fog ?

 Dick’s Details. They take your mind off your mind.

 It hit me pretty hard that Ron signed off just as I’m beginning to feel like I’m getting my life back. I told you I had a nasty operation a few weeks ago. It really squeezed the  wise guy out of me for a while. For the first time in my life, I actually felt kind of helpless. My strength is coming back now. I can walk a short distance, and drive the car, and I’m going to take my plane up for the first time since the operation this weekend. But then there will be Ron’s funeral. I’m going to need all my wheels for that. There’s a story about going to a funeral in the Night Connections personal audio cd. It’s called “A Real Friend.”

 Next time you go to a funeral…look around. You just never know…who might really have loved…enough…to give up the loving…for a lifetime.  “A Real Friend” is from the Night Connections personal audio cd. If you like it you can just keep the podcast. Or if you want a fresh copy, just download it from the Night Connections icon on the home page.

 My life is coming back. And it’s good. I heard the youngest member of our family… little Cecilia…on the phone…trying to say mommy. What a lovely sound…a baby trying to talk. I can read to my Lady Wonder Wench at night again. My voice is still a little worn down, but it’s good enough for a late night Once Upon A Time again. It was a beautiful day today, and tonight is incredible…completely quiet…a dark chocolate sky full of stars. The woman I love is dozing off to sleep on the couch across the room… probably keeping one eye open at all times of course… because she knows those juices are flowing again. The ones that make my eyebrows wiggle and my ears  twich…among other things…when I look at her. 

 I’ve been lucky. The good Lord kept me locked up in those little studios so I couldn’t hurt myself for a long time. And it has been a good long time. It takes a few years to become a member of the Louie-Louie Generation. Some people do the nip and tuck, trying to turn their odometers back. Not me. I want people to know why I look this way. I’ve traveled a lot of roads. And some of them weren’t paved.

 So it was Ron’s turn to walk out of his little studio room, and close the door behind him the other day. Everybody gets a turn eventually. I wonder where he is now. I know he’s somewhere…making everything around him a little more comfortable. Maybe there’s some place where good folks go when they wander out of their personal safe rooms, and close the door behind them. The holy guys in most religions seem to think so. It’s probably right next door to where unborn babies hang out waiting to be conceived. Baby is one of those nutty words that I like. Say it slowly. Bay-Bee. Sounds like a little honey maker who lives in a safe harbor. Bay-bee. The picture fits little Cecelia, trying to say, “mommy” on the phone  today.

 And so, as I’ve heard Ron say plenty of times on the air…”The beat goes on.”

Making A Smudge

Saturday, March 13th, 2010

I’m feeling really good about maybe making a smudge. But every time I get to feeling really good about it, an automatic thing happens. My head fills up with a picture of Mr. O’connell, my 320 pound high school Latin teacher, and he’s saying “Sic Transit Gloriam.” As most of you know, Sic Transit Gloriam does not mean “Gloria got sick on the subway. “Loosely translated Sic Transit Gloriam means “Don’t get a big head”…but you have to have a pretty big head for a picture of a guy the size of Mr. O’connell and fancy words like Sic Transit Gloriam to fit inside.

 The thing that made me feel like maybe I was making a smudge, was when my friend Dean Landsman called…all excited. He said Alec Baldwin just mentioned you on a public broadcasting radio show called Studio 360. To hear how it sounded, click here

 That’s what I call making a smudge. Look, guys like me don’t do big enough things to make a mark on life. The kind of people who make a mark on life invent the internet, or become president of the United States, or marry Britany Spears. But doing a radio show that people remember for a couple of decades…that’s what I call making a smudge. And it’s a valid smudge whether somebody famous like Alec Baldwin remembers, or whether it’s a non-famous fellow smudge maker who remembers.

I put a few minutes of an air check of Mouth vs. Ear on the current podcast.  It was lots of fun. And I guess it helped me make a smudge. 

 Dick’s Details Quiz. All answers are in the current podcast.

 1- What did Daniel Webster think the members of congress had in common with a tree?

 2- Where did bankers get the idea of how to goose us? 

3- What does your car probably have in common with a three day old guinea pig ?

 Dick’s Details. They take your mind off your mind.

 Mouth vs. Ear was a lot of fun. It was the result of the fact that I’ve always thought that it’s always easier to apologize for something you’ve done than to get permission to do something a little unusual that you want to do. The show started when the program director at WNBC said the station license calls for doing a half hour informational public service talk show every night. A half hour informational public service show is usually thirty minutes of bore—ing. But I figured that a quiz show is about information. And most quiz shows are always talking about how honest they are. So why not do a quiz show where we tell people up front that we’re going to cheat. If I had asked permission to do it, it would never have gotten on the air. So I just did it. And I lucked out. I think when you get to be a member of the Louie-Louie Generation, and you look back at your life, you’re always sorrier for the things you didn’t do, than for the things you did…even when the some of the things you did were mistakes. Big Louie, his own bad self…the Chief Mustard Cutter of the Louie-Louie Generation always says, the worst mistake you can make is being afraid to make mistakes.

 There’s a story in the Bedtime Stories personal audio cd about a guy who didn’t take a chance…when he had the chance to take. I think he was pretty sorry for it. The story is called The Prince of Fantasy. It’s in the current podcast. If you like it, you can just keep the podcast. Or if you want a fresh copy, just download it from the Bedtime Stories icon on the home page.

 I spent a long time in the radio business. Some of the people on the air have…egos. In fact sometimes you see a guy walking out of a radio studio holding hands with himself. I don’t like that.

 And I very well understand the comparatively small impact I’ve had on life. I didn’t invent the internet. I didn’t become president of the U.S. I didn’t even marry Britany Speers…I’m especially glad about that one. So you don’t have to worry that I’ll think I’m some kind of big shot. I know I’ll never make a really big mark on life. But it’s fun thinking I’ve made at least a little smudge. So don’t hold a gruge for the guy who’s made a smudge. 

 Don’t worry. My lady Wonder Wench understands the difference between a mark and a smudge. And she’s not the least bit afraid to hit me with a fast Sic Transit Gloriam if she notices me holding my own hand. 

 So, thanks for letting me make my little smudge. You’re doing that just by listening to this podcast…whether you’re Alec Baldwin or not.

Back In The Chair

Saturday, March 6th, 2010

I’m back here, sitting in my big, comfortable, black leather poppa chair in my living room, popping percuset. For those of you who aren’t familiar with it, percuset is a strong medication for pain, but it has some interesting side effects. For example, popping percuset makes you FEEL sophisticated, but if you pop too much percuset,  it takes away your ability to SAY sophisticated. So you’ve got to be careful.

 The operation is over. I have a new knee, a sore throat from screaming with pain, and a cane to show for it. I don’t actually need my cane, but they wouldn’t let me leave the hospital without it. So I took it…and I gave it a name. I call my cane… Candy. As in Candy Cane. Because I figure life is short, so I might as well make fun of it.

 The stay in the hospital was amazing. I was in there with a bunch of old people…all of whom were about my age. This was the first time I was ever in a hospital for more than a day. And it was fascinating to me how easy it is to become a patient…instead of being a Louie-Louie Generation guy like me, who is determined to come out of there prowling like a puma.

 This is something to remember if you or somebody you care about goes into the hospital. One overnight stay in the hospital,  and if you’re not careful… you change. You’re no longer a person…you become a patient…like every other patient in the place. Most patients are passive, selfish, and sad. And there are reasons for that.  A patient is passive, because the hospital staff does everything for you. They even clean up any mess you might make because your body isn’t working very well. A patient gets selfish because he loses touch with the outside world when he’s stuck in the hospital, so the only world he can really feel is just himself. And a patient gets sad because he knows he’s now a patient, and he remembers that once…he was a person.

 That’s a little heavy…but I think it’s important. Because there are a lot of us Louie-Louie Generation folks in hospitals. And a lot of us have people we love who are patients…and it helps when we know why the people we know…are so different…when they become patients.

 And here’s one more heavy hit. If you’re trying to take care of someone you love, who has changed into a patient, try not to take it too personally when that person you love starts to resent you. It happens. And that figures too. After all, a patient is passive, selfish, and sad. And you’re not. And your patient remembers being a person…like you. 

 And while I’m at it, let me give you a few hospital fashion tips for those of us in the Louie-Louie Generation. Nose rings and bifocals don’t go together. Neither do miniskirts and support hose. Ankle bracelets look strange with corn pads, as does a belly button ring with a gall bladder surgery scar. Your walker is going to cause trouble for your in line skates…and for God’s sake, avoid wearing a thong with your depends.

 Dick’s Details Quiz…all answers are in the current podcast.

1-    Why did all dinosaurs walk on their toes ?

2-    Where are virgins not allowed to get married ?

3-    What will probably be the long term result of the fact that more money was spent last year on breast implants and viagra than on Alzheimer’s research.

 Dick’s Details. They take your mind off your mind.

 I want to thank David Summer for doing his old man’s podcasts over the last two weeks. And let me remind you of his own website which is Lots of you sent compliments on his work, and I’m very proud of him. Also I want to thank my Lady Wonder Wench for doing the blogs while I was in the hospital.

 Some of you may remember that my Lady was in the hospital about a year and a half ago. So my stay in the hospital was kind of an opportunity for both of us to be a patient and both of us to be the person taking care of a patient. That’s quite an experience…both ways. My lady’s middle name is Anne. And Ann is the name of the heroine of the personal audio cd story called Love Comes When You Least Expect It. One of the chapters in the story has the hero talking to God, about his lady Anne, who’s in the hospital after a terrible accident.

 This chapter is the result of the fact that I have a terrible problem trying to understand God. I guess I should just be grateful that God probably doesn’t have a problem understanding me. If you like the story, you can just keep this podcast. Or if you want a fresh copy, just go back to dick summer dot com, and download it from the icon on the home page.

 There’s a lot more to tell you about this hospital experience, but I think I’ll leave it for next time. This has been kind of a tough day for me. I got up this morning and I put a shirt on, and a button fell off. I picked up my briefcase, and the handle fell off. So now… I’m afraid to go to the bathroom.