The Dick Summer (re) Connection Chapter 5

The Dick Summer (re) Connection – Chapter 5

“Kool” sucks. It chills your life. It hides your heart. It follows “the Rules.”Heat is Neat. Heat makes me happy. Confession: I didn’t always see it that way. I grew up in “Big Boys Don’t Cry” Brooklyn and “The Rules” ruled. Rule number one was “be cool if you want to be accepted by the Guys.” Jokes all had cutting edges. Beauty was something only “chicks” cared about. And “Real Guys” were so tough they were never afraid. Fear was for wussies. So was anything that has to do with a hurting heart. It was like living in a 24/7 political talk radio show.

Then I had a son, Dave. There’s nothing like having a kid to smack a guy on the side of the head. Dave taught me a big lesson his first day home from the hospital. He was a happy, healthy, tiny winner, who smiled, waved his arms around, and cried any time he was uncomfortable. Dave shot a pee fountain about three feet into the air, and laughed. He was definitely uncool. And he was wonderful. No way would I change a thing about my kid but his diapers. What a smack on the side of the head. The rule of “the Rules” had come to a screeching, peeing, laughing, stinky, waving, happy end in my house.

The smacks on the side of the head came hard and fast after that. And each smack seemed to wake up my brain and open my eyes a little wider. Then I met my lady Wonder Wench and that was the Super Smack that punched all the way down to my toes. It grabbed my heart on the way down and said, “hey you, wake up.” A lot of that story is in the Lovin Touch and Bedtime Stories Personal Audio CDs. And even more of it is in the one called Love Comes When You Least Expect It. When this (re) Connection settles in a little more, maybe I’ll also put some of it here.

I’m giving you this perspective so you’ll understand how special it is to me that you (re) Connectors are sending stories. Such wonderful complex stories. Here’s part of one from “Joan P.”: “I started seeing a very wonderful guy during the summer of 1973. I gave him a copy of the (first) Lovin Touch book. The stories meant a lot to me. We were both separated at the time, and our love continued for seven years. He had family obligations and went back to his wife, and I remarried. My husband died this January, and his wife passed away in March. When a mutual friend mentioned that his wife had passed away, I hesitated but then called to offer my condolences. That call opened a whole new chapter in our lives by opening all the old feelings. The calls have become daily, and they last for many hours. We have about 25 years to catch up on. We had a lunch date last Wednesday. Our first look at one another is something I will forever hold in my heart….One of the first things he talked about was that 25 year old gift, your Lovin Touch book….We have another date this whole weekend.”

Probably obvious why something like this would be important to me. But here’s why it’s important to you. Ask yourself where you’ll hear a story like that on the radio now. With very few exceptions there’s simply no time for stuff like that. Because radio is now “kool.” It follows “The Guy’s Rules.” Recorded Big Voiced Announcers recite carefully researched “liners” on music stations while their carefully researched play lists grind away 24 hours a day. (A liner is a station slogan, like “more music less talk.”) Some stations use their Recorded Big Voiced Announcers to lie about their play lists. They say “We play whatever we want.” B.S. Their carefully researched lists are just a little longer. And besides, ” Who’s ‘We’ Kemo Sabe”? The Recorded Big Voiced Announcers don’t play anything. They just announce. Carefully researched topics pound their political point of view home on talk stations 24/7. And twenty minute sequences featuring fender benders and local scandals loop endlessly on the all news snooze. “The Rules” rule. “The Guys” have everything under control.

Some people who love radio hook up to XM and Sirius for radio with a little warmth. I don’t know much about them, so if you do, please let me know what you find there. My E-mail is ( dick@DickSummer.com ). I think Satellite Radio is an example of a great idea that was doomed by greed before it started. Neither XM nor Sirius was willing to share the cake. They made their systems incompatible. More of the “my way or the highway” attitude that the guys with the big sticks that are stuck in the ground have had forever. If they had promoted “Satellite Radio” together they might have made it. At least it would have speeded up the hardware distribution. But I think it’s too late now. The increasingly portable Internet with its audio and video PodCasts has arrived. I asked a friend who has Sirius in his car what it would take for him to include PodCasts in his in-car listening. He said it would have to be just like am-fm-satellite-PodCast. And that’s exactly what Ford, GM, and a couple of other auto biggies have announced they’ll be doing starting with next year’s models.

Some people are saying this is the end of radio. I don’t think so. But I may be wrong. I think this is just the latest problem the GRR (guys running radio) are facing. They’ve been running scared ever since tv flickered to life. About fifteen years ago they figured they’d win by ganging up on their listeners. That was called consolidation. When I was at NBC, I think the government would let you own 6 stations total. Last time I looked, Clear Channel was up to around 2,500 stations, and NBC is just about out of the radio business. But here’s why I may be wrong about radio’s survival. The only way the GRR can run so many stations at once and still make tons of money is by rigidly sticking to “the rules.” But staying rigid sucks your strength. You can only hang on to the edge of a cliff for a little while till you lose your grip. Guys don’t like to hear that. Remember “No Fear…Ever.” “My way or the highway.” And that’s why you very seldom hear stories like the one our (re) Connection reader Joan P. sent in, on the radio. It breaks one of the main rules: “Anything that shows a hurting heart is for wussies.” Even though they’re running radio, the GRR are still, “Guys.” And Big Boys Don’t Cry.

Some people have been kind enough to ask why I don’t go back on the air. If someone came up with a Howard Stern type offer, it would happen before you could say, “Income Tax.” But since that’s not likely, here’s a more realistic answer: “I hate the rules.” That’s the beauty of this (re) Connection blog, and the Good Night PodCasts. No rules. These things can be happy and healthy little winners that wave their arms around, and even cry when they get uncomfortable. And one of the best things about this (re) Connection is that my son Dave grew up to become an accomplished musician and computer programmer. He’s the PodCast Master. I know he still likes to laugh a lot. He’s a very happy guy. And his wife Julie says I can assure you that he’s over his “pee fountain” stage.

Life is good.

3 Responses to “The Dick Summer (re) Connection Chapter 5”

  1. Russ Gardner says:

    what is a URL?
    I remember you from when you were on that Lowel/Boston station and loved it. You voice was very easy to listen and you puncuation(SP) great.
    I have a coupld of your cd’s. they are good.

  2. Glen J. says:

    Dick, glad you’re back from your non-cosmetic shnoz-ectomy. Here’s to NOT following the Rules! I can’t speak for XM, but I have not found anything on Sirius that remotely compares to your kind of radio. And New York radio has indeed changed incredibly. Some of the old jocks are still on, but it’s sad only hearing them read the same tired liners. How people like me long for the days of turning on the old AM in the car, set to the 50,000 watt flamethrower that was the flagship of your old employers. Remember, Dick, just because the industry has changed doesn’t mean there aren’t countless listeners out here (like me) who miss you like crazy! Thanks for figuring out how to Re-Connect with us all through the ‘net.

  3. Paul M. says:

    Dick
    Thanks .. I received “Lovin Touch” just yesterday….Yup! it’s a time machine…transports one back to the “Sunday Subway”.You played Dick Rosmini and I mentioned that I still on occasion find myself whistling 2 Shady Ladys in 3/4 Time…. So you can imagine my surprise when I found out that here in Portland,Oregon …He had his Gibson 12 String stolen…. a guitar, in his own words, he was never able to equal.. I have found that life is a strange dance… the tempo and steps as well as the partners tend to change from time to time, when you least expect it. Thanks for those times back in Boston…. Your show and the music was very special to many of us…. and as you keep this connection going you will see just how many that was.
    Thanks again
    Paul M.

The Dick Summer (re) Connection. Chapter 5

The Dick Summer (re) Connection – Chapter 5

“Kool” sucks. It chills your life. It hides your heart. It follows “the Rules.”Heat is Neat. Heat makes me happy. Confession: I didn’t always see it that way. I grew up in “Big Boys Don’t Cry” Brooklyn and “The Rules” ruled. Rule number one was “be cool if you want to be accepted by the Guys.” Jokes all had cutting edges. Beauty was something only “chicks” cared about. And “Real Guys” were so tough they were never afraid. Fear was for wussies. So was anything that has to do with a hurting heart. It was like living in a 24/7 political talk radio show.

Then I had a son, Dave. There’s nothing like having a kid to smack a guy on the side of the head. Dave taught me a big lesson his first day home from the hospital. He was a happy, healthy, tiny winner, who smiled, waved his arms around, and cried any time he was uncomfortable. Dave shot a pee fountain about three feet into the air, and laughed. He was definitely uncool. And he was wonderful. No way would I change a thing about my kid but his diapers. What a smack on the side of the head. The rule of “the Rules” had come to a screeching, peeing, laughing, stinky, waving, happy end in my house.

The smacks on the side of the head came hard and fast after that. And each smack seemed to wake up my brain and open my eyes a little wider. Then I met my lady Wonder Wench and that was the Super Smack that punched all the way down to my toes. It grabbed my heart on the way down and said, “hey you, wake up.” A lot of that story is in the Lovin Touch and Bedtime Stories Personal Audio CDs. And even more of it is in the one called Love Comes When You Least Expect It. When this (re) Connection settles in a little more, maybe I’ll also put some of it here.

I’m giving you this perspective so you’ll understand how special it is to me that you (re) Connectors are sending stories. Such wonderful complex stories. Here’s part of one from “Joan P.”: “I started seeing a very wonderful guy during the summer of 1973. I gave him a copy of the (first) Lovin Touch book. The stories meant a lot to me. We were both separated at the time, and our love continued for seven years. He had family obligations and went back to his wife, and I remarried. My husband died this January, and his wife passed away in March. When a mutual friend mentioned that his wife had passed away, I hesitated but then called to offer my condolences. That call opened a whole new chapter in our lives by opening all the old feelings. The calls have become daily, and they last for many hours. We have about 25 years to catch up on. We had a lunch date last Wednesday. Our first look at one another is something I will forever hold in my heart….One of the first things he talked about was that 25 year old gift, your Lovin Touch book….We have another date this whole weekend.”

Probably obvious why something like this would be important to me. But here’s why it’s important to you. Ask yourself where you’ll hear a story like that on the radio now. With very few exceptions there’s simply no time for stuff like that. Because radio is now “kool.” It follows “The Guy’s Rules.” Recorded Big Voiced Announcers recite carefully researched “liners” on music stations while their carefully researched play lists grind away 24 hours a day. (A liner is a station slogan, like “more music less talk.”) Some stations use their Recorded Big Voiced Announcers to lie about their play lists. They say “We play whatever we want.” B.S. Their carefully researched lists are just a little longer. And besides, ” Who’s ‘We’ Kemo Sabe”? The Recorded Big Voiced Announcers don’t play anything. They just announce. Carefully researched topics pound their political point of view home on talk stations 24/7. And twenty minute sequences featuring fender benders and local scandals loop endlessly on the all news snooze. “The Rules” rule. “The Guys” have everything under control.

Some people who love radio hook up to XM and Sirius for radio with a little warmth. I don’t know much about them, so if you do, please let me know what you find there. My E-mail is ( dick@DickSummer.com ). I think Satellite Radio is an example of a great idea that was doomed by greed before it started. Neither XM nor Sirius was willing to share the cake. They made their systems incompatible. More of the “my way or the highway” attitude that the guys with the big sticks that are stuck in the ground have had forever. If they had promoted “Satellite Radio” together they might have made it. At least it would have speeded up the hardware distribution. But I think it’s too late now. The increasingly portable Internet with its audio and video PodCasts has arrived. I asked a friend who has Sirius in his car what it would take for him to include PodCasts in his in-car listening. He said it would have to be just like am-fm-satellite-PodCast. And that’s exactly what Ford, GM, and a couple of other auto biggies have announced they’ll be doing starting with next year’s models.

Some people are saying this is the end of radio. I don’t think so. But I may be wrong. I think this is just the latest problem the GRR (guys running radio) are facing. They’ve been running scared ever since tv flickered to life. About fifteen years ago they figured they’d win by ganging up on their listeners. That was called consolidation. When I was at NBC, I think the government would let you own 6 stations total. Last time I looked, Clear Channel was up to around 2,500 stations, and NBC is just about out of the radio business. But here’s why I may be wrong about radio’s survival. The only way the GRR can run so many stations at once and still make tons of money is by rigidly sticking to “the rules.” But staying rigid sucks your strength. You can only hang on to the edge of a cliff for a little while till you lose your grip. Guys don’t like to hear that. Remember “No Fear…Ever.” “My way or the highway.” And that’s why you very seldom hear stories like the one our (re) Connection reader Joan P. sent in, on the radio. It breaks one of the main rules: “Anything that shows a hurting heart is for wussies.” Even though they’re running radio, the GRR are still, “Guys.” And Big Boys Don’t Cry.

Some people have been kind enough to ask why I don’t go back on the air. If someone came up with a Howard Stern type offer, it would happen before you could say, “Income Tax.” But since that’s not likely, here’s a more realistic answer: “I hate the rules.” That’s the beauty of this (re) Connection blog, and the Good Night PodCasts. No rules. These things can be happy and healthy little winners that wave their arms around, and even cry when they get uncomfortable. And one of the best things about this (re) Connection is that my son Dave grew up to become an accomplished musician and computer programmer. He’s the PodCast Master. I know he still likes to laugh a lot. He’s a very happy guy. And his wife Julie says I can assure you that he’s pretty well over his “pee fountain” stage.

Life is good.

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