Begs to Differ... What You're Watching... Just a coincidence?...
Thursday, September 27, 2001
According to Mikhals, the report was apparently based on informal, grassroots e-mail messages that circulated between Clear Channel program directors following the attacks. Just like everyone else in the country, program directors were trying to figure out an appropriate response to the situation. The e-mail was a sort of brainstorming session, with various programmers adding their thoughts about what songs might be insensitive, inflammatory, too militaristic or too unpatriotic.
"There was no official memo," says Mikhals. "A lot of e-mails went around among program directors. What we did is each of us threw in ideas about what might be appropriate."
At KTOM, Mikhals says station personnel elected to pull three songs from the usual playlist: "It's a Great Day to be Alive," "One Way Ticket" and "Burn." At KOCN, another Clear Channel station, only "You Dropped a Bomb on Me" was red-tagged and at KDON, no songs were affected. And, says, Mikhals, even the songs that were taken off the air were put back on the playlist after Wednesday, Sept. 12.
Mikhals says he feels the Times blew the whole thing out of proportion. "It's not about impeding anyone's First Amendment rights; it's about being sensitive."
WHAT YOU'RE WATCHING... I have an inside source who works the night shift in an independently owned Monterey video store. He'll go unnamed because he cherishes his relative anonymity; call him Video Guy. He has a few observations about people's video-watching habits over the last couple weeks.
According to Video Guy, in the days immediately following the hijack attacks, there was a big demand for comedies, the sillier the better. People wanted something that would take their minds off the horror, that would maybe make them remember the sound of laughter. "Uplifting" and "family" movies were also frequently requested. On the other hand, action and war movies were low on the list of requests. After all, how could filmmakers compete with the real images with which we were bombarded by news outlets?
A week later, he says, the requests were approaching a more normal balance but there was a change in customers' moods. They seemed to want more help in making their selections than usual. "Maybe," muses Video Guy, "they just feel the need for more human interaction."
JUST A COINCIDENCE?... This is truly weird. Microsoft's Bill Gates has often been accused of being the potentate of an evil empire. Which is craziness, of course. He may be the leader of a cutthroat, mercilessly capitalist regime, but evil empire? Nah... But then again sometimes you have to wonder.
A friend forwarded the following email to me:
1. Open Microsoft Word.
2. Type: Q33 NY (the flight number of one of the airplanes that crashed into the WTC).
3. Change the font size to: 26.
4. Change the font style to: Wingdings."
I don't want to spoil the surprise. Just try it. It's enough to make you wonder if Bill Gates really does rub shoulders with the devil. It's a fascinating bit of trivia going around the 'net.
But after you try it, do a little fact checking. You'll discover there was no flight number "Q33 NY" that crashed into the World Trade Center. In fact, it was American flight 11 that slammed into the north tower, and United flight 175 that levelled the south tower.