Archive for August, 2010

Dickie-Quickie #3

Tuesday, August 31st, 2010

So far, Proud Podcast Participant Betsy’s comment sums up what almost all of you are saying:

I can understand how people could have a problem with  a mosque at Ground Zero, but I agree with you, it needs to be allowed to be there.

Dickie-Quickie #2

Monday, August 30th, 2010

Another thoughtful comment about the Ground Zero blog, from Proud Podcast Participant, Sheri”

I just read your blog… and at first when I heard about the Mosque AT
Ground Zero I was upset, that is until I did some more research and
found that it’s about 2 blocks away… and contains areas for other
religions.  I think it should be AT Ground Zero.. it should be a
multi-relgion place for prayer and mediation.  It should be a place
where people of ALL religions, and those like me, who don’t like
“religion” because of the politics involved in them.  I’m a firm
believer in God, and Jesus as my savior… I was raised Catholic,
respect the Pope for the position he holds, but have major problems
with the thing that they have done in the past, and continue to do…
all in the name of God.  There are, for lack of a better word, crazies
in all religions.. but they are so few in numbers compared to the good
people in all religions.  The blood of innocent people, of all walks
of life, all nationalities, all religions, all beliefs, all faiths,
and even those who didn’t believe is in the ground there at Ground
Zero.  The ground is tainted with all the hatred of the world.  What
better way to cleanse that area, then a place for ALL to come.. to
remember.. to pray,,,, to mediate.. to seek guidance in this difficult


Monday, August 30th, 2010

Thank you for the thoughtful and heartfelt responses to the Ground Zero blog. Here’s an example from Proud Podcast Participant, Ray:

Dick,   I lost a cousin in the World Trade Center.  She worked at a sandwich shop.  She was a wonderful girl born in the Dominican Republic who saw America as the land of opportunity.  Working in the World Trade Center was like a dream come true. 

  I think that you can’t wipe out an ideology unless you are willing to kill every last person that believes that ideology.  The best chance we have to live in peace is to reach out to Muslims and celebrate what we have in common with them.  If our way of life is a threat to the more fundamental believers, we should do everything we can not to export our culture where it is not understood or appreciated.  But the worse thing we can do is paint all Muslims with a wide brush and say that Muslims attacked us. That would  be like saying that Christianity was responsible for the Tragedy at WACO or saying the LDS Church is responsible for child brides in Fundamentalists Camps.   We need to embrace our Muslim brothers and sisters and tell them that there is a lot of things we are selves hate about our Western Culture.   How can we ever say that we are the land of the free if we stop even one church or Mosque from being built anywhere in this country?   The only evidence that the Terrorist will have achieved their goal is if we say no to this Mosque.

Two American Guys

Saturday, August 28th, 2010

Most of the time, this blog is about fun. But this time, it’s about a problem. There’s some “end of the summer fun” in this week’s podcast at But this blog is about a problem that’s important to me. So please bear with me for a few moments. And if you feel like it, I’d like to hear how you feel about this problem. ( )

 You can’t run away from problems. They’re mobile. If you run away from them, they’ll chase you down and kill you. I think the best way to explain this problem is by telling you a true story about two American guys named Al. Alfred is a Jersey boy. Born and bred American. Alex is from Alexandria, Egypt. He became an American on purpose.

 Alfred has been about my best buddy for a very long time. We met while we were both in the broadcasting business in New York.  For years we’ve stood up for…and with…each other through deaths, near deaths, and desertions. And we’ve celebrated around 30 New Year’s Eves, a couple of big family weddings, and lots of quiet middle of the night conversations about things we couldn’t discuss with anyone else. Al is a U.S. Air Force veteran.

 Alex, I’ve known for about 20 years. My Lady Wonder Wench and I have dinner at his place at least once a week. He owns a diner. He knows Ms. Wench is interested in archeology, so he offered us the free use of his house in Cairo if we went there to visit the pyramids. When Ms. Wench was injured, Alex made Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners for us. In Egypt, he was a lawyer and a police chief. One of his sons recently applied to the Air Force academy.    

 Two proud American guys named Al. Two time tested friends. Strong guys. Proud men. Good husbands and fathers. Two God fearing people, who celebrate different holy days. Alfred is a Christian. Alex is a Muslim.  Al from Jersey has enjoyed dinner at the other Al’s place many times. They talk, and joke…and enjoy each other’s company. And they both agree that a mosque should never be built near the site of the World Trade Center…”Ground Zero.”

 They’re both absolutely wrong.

 Alex says there should be more sensitivity to the families who lost lives there. Alfred says.…”we’ll have a terrorist mosque at The World Trade Center to pray in.  Oh … that’s right.  We don’t have a World Trade Center anymore!”  I say, there is no more appropriate place in America for a mosque.

 As some of you know, I grew up in the Bay Ridge section of Brooklyn. That’s right around the corner from Ground Zero. The dust from the buildings…and the people who died in them…coated the home where I lived for weeks. My Lady Wonder Wench worked on the 34th floor of the North Tower. I did part of the NBC Radio coverage of the 1976 Tall Ships celebration from the observation deck. I fly America’s flag outside my home…and take it in each night, and any time there’s bad weather. The flag was given to me by an American who first flew it over Camp Adder in Iraq, on September 11, 1996. My Lady Wonder Wench and I are very grateful, and proud to be third generation Americans. And that mosque belongs at Ground Zero.

 There’s a very good political point being made, that building a mosque there would be a message to Muslims around the world that we can be their friends. But that’s not the best reason a mosque belongs there. Here are some better reasons:

 The husband and wife who are planning to build the mosque are well known as people of good will. It is their intention to promote understanding between the Muslim world and ours. In fact, the husband is presently on what amounts to a government sponsored good will tour of the Muslim world on behalf of America.

 Where better than at such a holy site as Ground Zero, to gather and pray for such a holy cause as brotherhood, peace and understanding. The plans for the Mosque include a space for Christians and Jews to come and pray. What better a place for Christians, Jews, and Muslims to come together to pray near where Christian, Jew, and Muslim Americans died together in the towers?

 They were Americans. This is America. Ground Zero is an American holy place. Our Christian President with a Muslim father, and New York’s Jewish Mayor made simple, honorable, and very American comments about this. In essence, they’ve said, “This is America. All faiths, races, and native nationalities are supposed to be welcome here.” But they’re not always…are they. 

 Catholics and Jews, and Italians and Irish, and Blacks and Hispanics have been unwelcome here. Some of you can remember those days. Or your parents can. Or you can just go read about it in a history book. Who needs guys like John Kennedy, Albert Einstein, Christopher Columbus, Jackie Robinson, and David Farragut…yes…the American Admiral who said, ”Damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead” that David Farragut…he belongs on this list. He was a proud Hispanic American. Who needs guys like that? Right? I’d say, we do.    

 This is America. That’s why that mosque belongs near Ground Zero. We are a young land. We have a lot to learn. One of the lessons we seem to learn with the greatest difficulty is that we must mean what we say. “Give us your poor…your huddled masses.” “All men are created equal.” We are free to speak our minds, and worship God as we see fit.

 All Muslims are not terrorists…any more than all Christians would murder a doctor for performing an abortion…or murder a man for being black…or firebomb a Temple.

 The inclination to love and be loved is one of the strongest survival mechanisms born into babies. Babies can be pains in the ass-es. They wake up crying every two hours, pee in their diapers, and vomit all over the place. Then they also look at you, laugh, and hold their arms out for you to pick them up and love them. That’s born into them. It makes us want to keep caring for them.

 New York’s famous Theater District is only a few miles north of Ground Zero. One of the most famous musicals of all time played there for years. One of the most profound lines ever spoken from any stage, or in any assembly of human beings for that matter was first spoken there. It’s a line from the great muical, “South Pacific.” It goes something like, “You’re not born to hate. That’s something you have to be carefully taught.”

 There are reasonable points to be made on both sides. So there is a real problem. You can’t run away from problems. They’re mobile. They’ll chase you down and kill you.Those who lost families and friends in the World Trade disaster deserve sensitivity. But there is something even more important than sensitivity. It’s self-respect. Really meaning what you say. As in …”Crown thy good, with brotherhood. From sea to shining sea.”

That’s my story about two proud American guys. Two time-tested friends. Strong guys. Proud men. Good husbands and fathers. Two God fearing people, who celebrate different holy days.

I’d really like to hear how you feel about this. My e-mail is

 Meatime…peace be with you my friends.

Dickie-Quickie #4

Saturday, August 28th, 2010

Ever wonder about the kind of people who gather around this blog ?  This came in just now. It was written on one of the weary early morning hours , by a guy who cares. It refers to the woman who wrote the comment in yesterday’s Quickie. It’s the kind of thing that makes life worth while: 

The writer is known to me. She has a heavy burden to bear and does amazingly well in meeting the demands life places on her. She has been quite unfairly treated at times and relies somewhat on your Podcasts (and voice) for peace and relaxation as sleep comes. Dick, she is a precious gift to and shining light in this tired, hurting, struggling world. I am blessed to know her.

The Blog that will go up late tonight will be a bit different. It’s something I just need to get off my chest.

Dickie-Quickie #3

Thursday, August 26th, 2010

One of the nicest notes about the new Night Connections 3 personal audio CD, is from Proud Podcast Participant, Sheri S.:

I’ve listened to the whole CD… and dang you Dick… you made me cry!!  It’s probably just the mood I’ve been in lately.. but the one that got to me the most was “Close”.  I could identify with some many of them.. not always the whole story.. but parts of it.  I think this is probably the best so far! I’ve been the mistress… and the independent woman…. and been told it’s not your fault, but still feeling like if I had only been better at something…  I’ve been in a bad hands relation…. stayed there for 7 years,,, lived in my own little place that was made a bit better by a special person…. and dang it.. I even have a thing for bass players with or without long hair.  

I’m off to sleep now… you are still talking in my bed.  I love the speakers under my pillows.. I snuggle in and let you lull me into sleep.  It’s become a very important part of my nightly routine… I have found that if I don’t listen to you till I drift off.. I don’t sleep well.  I have a play list in itunes… it starts with the most recent podcast.. then one of the older ones…. and then a story from each of all the other CD’s, then “You Shine”, and “Got a Minute” and then all of quiet hands.  It’s usually about an hour long… some night I make it to the end.. other nights I don’t. And all of your CD’s are on my iphone just in case I’m not at home and I need to hear you.  I even made a ringtone out of my favorite part of “got a minute”.. the part about being used… and the not being used.  I haven’t assigned it to anyone… I just listen to it …. I know… I’m a tad bit crazy… we’ll just blame it on my meds… ,,, yeah… my meds.. that works

Dickie=Quickie #2

Wednesday, August 25th, 2010

Lots of folks commenting on the new Night Connections 3 album. (Free download this week only. Just send me an email.) Here’s a good example of the smart comments:

I chuckled at the first story, “Taking A Breath” when it told how she  wore her seatbelt, recycled, etc.  I recently managed to get a male unneutered stray cat down to the low cost clinic to be fixed.  A lot of people can’t understand why I would do that – guess it qualifies me as a “good girl”, eh?  😉  I kept him in my garage for a week and then set him free.  He disappeared for a couple days, probably off to see his girlfriend who took one look at him and exclaimed, “What the s___ happened to you???”  😉   He comes back to eat most days.  Want a cat? 😉  I think the gal in the story though is on her way, hopefully to do some things less modestly. 😉


Tuesday, August 24th, 2010

Lots of free (this week only) downloads for the new Night Connections 3 going out. Thanks for being interested. Here’s a sample of the kind of answers you’re giving on the “It’s Not Your Fault” track from the album. It’s from Proud Podcast Participant Sheri:

I would love to hear the new CD.  I just listened to the podcast, and
I think there had to be some signs that he’s just didn’t see…. and
in the near future when he starts looking back on it.. he will see
those signs he missed, and he won’t miss them again..

End Of Summer Freebie !

Friday, August 20th, 2010

Where the heck did the summer go ? The lazy, crazy, hazy days of Summer…and the under the boardwalk nights, watching the fireworks…and making some of our own…and the most beautiful girls in the world in their summer dresses…and walking in the sand. There’s still some time left, but as Big Louie, his own bad self, the Chief Mustard Cutter of the Louie-Louie Generation always says: “Life is like a giant roll of toilet paper. The closer it gets to the end the faster it goes.” Time to grab a share of the Summer love you’ve got coming to you…it’s going by pretty fast.

 One of the projects I wanted to do this Summer was to produce another Night Connections album. And I just finished it this week. To celebrate…let me give you a “Where did the summer go” gift…for this week only. I’ll send the new Night Connections 3 personal audio album to you via a download…free. Just drop me a note at Just this one week only…then it goes to CD Baby and Amazon for distribution and sale.

 When you get the album, if you feel like it, I’d appreciate it if you’d tell me which cuts you like, and which you don’t like. But you don’t have to do that if you don’t have the time/inclination. No strings. Free gift.

 The Night Connections CD series is important to me, because lots of the stories in it started going around in my head because of phone calls that I got while I was on the air late at night. Anonymous voices on the phone are sometimes direct lines to the heart. Some of those folks told me things they’d never tell their therapists, their mates, or even their holy guys. And I’ve found over the years, that those gut honest stories are more common than most people believe. And it seems to me that if some of these things were happening to me, I’d like to know that I wasn’t the only one…I’m not alone.

 Connections are two way streets. So these are very short stories…about two and a half minutes each…and if they’re doing what I hope they’ll do, you’ll want to supply your own conclusions to each of them. That’s something I’d also like you to tell me. What  do you think each of these people might do to resolve their situations. But as I said…there are no strings to this “End of Summer” celebration gift. Just send me an email: .

 Connections depend on communications…which often get pretty badly screwed up…even commercially. There are some really hair raising examples of that in the Dick’s Details Quiz. All the answers are in the current podcast.

1-    Which ball point pens will NOT impregnate you ?

2-    What connection did Colgate have with French porn?

3-    Who claimed that, “It takes an aroused man to make a chicken affectionate ?”

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

 One of the tracks from the brand new Night Connections 3 personal audio album is in the current podcast. It’s about a guy who was driving to his girlfriend’s home, when he almost got blown off the road with a cell phone call from her. It’s called, It’s Not Your Fault. Aren’t there some kind of hints in a relationship like that ? Isn’t there some heat missing…or maybe misplaced…some kind of hesitation in a caress ? When he looked deep into her eyes, didn’t he see some kind of confusion looking back…or even some kind of resentment ? I don’t know. If you have some clues about that, please let me know. I’d really appreciate it.

 If you like the story, you can just keep the podcast. Or if you’d like a free download of the whole cd, just drop me an email… …this week only. Then it goes on sale at CD baby and Amazon dot com. Feel free to pass the free download around to friends, but please don’t sell it.

 “The Summer has inhaled, and held its breath too long,” is a line from a great old song. A line from another great song goes, “It’s a long, long time, from May to December. And the days grow short, as you reach September.” As Big Louie, his own bad self, the Chief Mustard Cutter of the Louie-Louie generation always says about this time of year, “Enjoy what’s left…before your birthday suit needs a pressing, and the candles cost more than your birthday cake.”

 I have a date tonight with my Lady Wonder Wench. We’re going to a nice restaurant, and a show. She’s lovely in her loose fitting, blue, cotton, Summer dress. And I must admit I look dashing in my gold lame loin cloth and purple ostrich feather. I hope they don’t spoil the effect at the restaurant by making me put on a jacket.

Kris The Artist

Saturday, August 14th, 2010

Our daughter has an expression that’s well known in the family. Her left eyebrow goes up, she smiles a quick little tight smile, and her nose twitches. She’s done that ever since she was an infant. It’s a signal that she’s going to make something happen. Kris is a biker chick, a lacy lady, a blue jeans babe, a proud mother of three great kids, and a talented artist. She’s the kind of daughter who makes a guy hope he really is something like she thinks he is. And she’s my Lady Wonder Wench’s best friend.  

 Kris lives in Massachusetts, and we live in Pennsylvania. So we don’t get to see her nearly as often as we’d like. So when she said she was coming for a visit, it brought a “small drop of sunshine into our otherwise drab existence.”  

 Kris looks at life… differently. Like most artists, she marches to a different accordion player. And when she’s on the march…do yourself a favor…get out of her way. Kris is such a talented artist that she’s been able to support herself and her three kids by painting murals in business and homes. And she decided that our bathroom needed a make over.

 She arrived after a seven hour drive, dressed in her painting overalls and wearing paint covered sneakers…ready for business. We wanted to take her to dinner, and enjoy some comfortable conversation. But she said, “I’d really like it if you’d order out for some pizza…because I’ve got work to do.” I said, “But Honey”…and her left eyebrow went up, she smiled that quick little Krissy smile, her nose twitched, and she marched off into the bathroom…and started tearing wallpaper. As you may have noticed, you can’t just tear a little wallpaper. Once you start, you’ve got to keep going. And she did.

 That accordion player who makes her march must have been pumping pretty fast. She painted a beautifully smooth wall… and I said, “That’s great honey…now let’s go to a nice restaurant.” Her left eyebrow went up, and I didn’t even wait for the smile and the nose twitch. I just called on my magnificent knowledge of the English language…and shut up.

 After she got the walls all smooth, she painted them to look like bricks are showing through the plaster. Since it’s a bathroom, that gives a whole new meaning to the old saying…”It’s time to hit the bricks”…which makes more sense than saying “I’m going to the bathroom” anyway. Because most of the time you go in there, you’re…commoding, not bathing. 

 Then she painted a window looking out onto a beach scene. It’s beautiful. It makes you want to drop your towel, and run into the warm ocean…crunching the soft sand under your feet, and grabbing big breaths of salty air. But don’t try it. You’d get…a face full of plaster.

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

1- Why are bananas similar to politicians ?

2- Who’s more critical…husbands or wives ?

3- Why is the Astro’s shortstop constantly checking his zipper ?

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

 There’s something sexy about artists. Maybe it’s because they’re so different from most of us. There’s a story about that in the Night Connections 2 personal audio cd. It’s called, Painting, Pottery, and Passion. That wife was listening with her heart…and she heard such a terrible silence. But she knew it would probably happen. So why did she do that…risk losing both her husband and a friend ? People do that you know. Probably…even people you know.

 Painting, Pottery, and Passion is from the Night Connections 2 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 2 icon on the home page.

 I guess you can tell I’m a little proud of our daughter Kris. Kris the artist. Artists are magicians. When I stand there in my brick commode room, looking out the magic window she painted on the wall, I can feel the soft sand, and the ocean breeze, I can hear the wind slipping past the wings of the gulls. And for just a wonderful moment, I feel like the 19 year old lifeguard I once was…standing on the beach with my arms folded, waiting for my hopes and dreams to unfold…all those years ago.

 Kris didn’t go to school to learn how to be an artist. She was born an artist. A magician. Ever since she was an infant, when her left eyebrow went up, and she smiled that quick little tight smile, and her nose twitched, some kind of magic happened. And maybe it will again. From now on, every time I hit the bricks, it will have another chance to turn me into something like the father I know she thinks I am.