Saturday, June 30, 2012

Who are Some Regular Readers of Bruce's Journal?

I use a tool called Google Analytics to analyze hits to Bruce's Journal.  I know some friends who regular access it, but from what I have observed most people search Google and land on one page.  Some of my popular sites are one's that discuss:

  • TGIF
  • The Beach Boys
  • Bob Shannon's absence from WCBS-FM
  • My story of the two dollar bill
  • Jason Keller - Jeopardy Superstar
I have observed some regular visitors from the following cities.  I don't know who these people are:
  • Middletown, NY - I traded radio tapes with someone form there years ago, but he since moved to Queens
  • Wilke-Barre, PA - I have never known anyone from there
  • Cranford, NJ - it is possible that an NJIT colleague who lives there follows this journal, but I don't know his/her identity
Any regular readers are certainly welcome to post a comment.

Friday, June 29, 2012

Congratulation to WFAN on its 25th Anniversary

On July 1, 1987 WHN became WFAN at 1050 on the AM dial.  Back then it was the only all-sports station in the USA.  Now there are over 700 stations as the format has gravitated to the FM dial.  This weekend the station is celebrating its heritage by featuring many of its former hosts and New York sports stars over the past 25 years.  Back in the early days of the station, people felt that the format could not be sustained.  The move from 1050 to 660 AM really helped since it went to a clear channel frequency.

We I listened about 9:30 this morning former station executive Joel Hollander phoned in.  I immediately turned off the radio since I didn't want to hear that low life speak.  Even though it was over 7 years ago, I can not forgive him for the insensitive hijacking of WCBS-FM and his laughing it up when he was interviewed on CNBC.

Over the years I have been an irregular listener of the station.  When I do listen it is rarely for more than 30 minutes.  I have never attempted to phone the station since I have heard that callers are often put on hold for a long time.  There is a regular called "Bruce from Flushing", who is not me.

There is a detailed history of WFAN written by radio historian Vince Santerelli

Thursday, June 28, 2012

More Random Thoughts

My Three Sons was one of my favorite TV shows while growing up.  It actually ran on network TV from 1960-172 and was rerun on Nick at Nite's TVLand in the 1980s.  Don Grady who played Robbie just passed away at age 68.

Here is a Beatle's trivia question.  Besides the Fab Four who starred in A Hard Day's Night, Help, and Magical Mystery Tour?  The answer is Victor Spinetti who recently died at age 82.

I m glad that the U.S. Supreme Court approved of the Obama healthcare plan.  Lee is able to be on my medical plan until he is 26.

In Boston radio station WODS at 103.3 FM changed format from classic hits to Top 40.  I listened to Barry Scott's Lost 45s on that station. It looks like the big radio executives just want their stations to appeal to a younger audience.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

I Bought an Amazon Kindle Fire

I guess I needed a new toy or a backup for my laptop, but I bought a Kindle Fire.  I was tempted to get an iPad, but the cost was $500 vs $200 for the Kindle Fire.  Certainly the iPad has more capabilities, but many of the apps exist for both products.  It will take me some time to learn the capabilities of my new toy.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Random Thoughts of the Day

Instead of several tweeting several times, I will post one journal entry of more than 140 characters.  By the way you can follow me on Twitter at @bruces8852.

The Subway Series is over as the Yankees won two out of three.  The Mets were terrible last night against the Chicago Cubs as they committed three errors in one inning and lost 6-1.

Yesterday was my 33rd anniversary as an information perofessional.  You can read the details at

Have a nice day.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Disappointing Night at Citifield

It was a good start for the Mets last night as they took a 3-0 lead in the top of the 7th inning.  Then starting pitcher Chris Young gave up a 3 run homer to Raul Ibanez.  Later in that inning pinch hitter Eric Chavez homered off jon Rauch to give the Yankees a 4-3 lead which the bullpen held.

I was surprised to see so many Yankee fans at Citifield.  I had to buy these tickets through a package, but I would estimate that about a third of the fans were wearing Yankee shirts.  The people in my section were civil.  I remember a few years ago there were fist fights between Met and Yankee fans.  Tonight is the rubber game of the series.

Game summary from ESPN

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Subway Series Part 2 - Good Start for the Mets

I was not at last night's game, but watched it on TV.  The Mets scored 5 runs in the first inning and held on to a 6-4 victory led by a three run homer by Ike Davis and a fine pitching performance by Jon Niese.  The Mets strength this season has been their ability to score with 2 outs.  The Yankees strength has been the home run.  They got back into the game by home runs by Alex Rodriguez, Andruw Jones, and Robinson Cano.  There are no cheap home runs at Citifield.  The Yankees have scored more than half of their runs on homers this season so far.  We will be at the game tonight.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

I finally ordered a Kindle Fire

In December 2010 I bought an Amazon Kindle.  I have found it very useful for reading books.  It is certainly much lighter than a traditional hard cover book.  It make commuting a little easier.  Of course, after you buy an electronic device, a better one comes out as the Kindle Fire was introduced.

A few weeks ago I received an iPad from the NJIT Library to try out.  I really enjoyed using it, but it costs about $500 plus tax and accessories.  Today, my colleague Heather brought her Kindle Fire to work.  She let me experiment with it for a while.  Certainly the iPad has more capabilities, but I decided to economize and bought the Kindle Fire for about $200.  It will give me another toy.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

The Best Reasonable Doubt that Money Can Buy

I don't have to repeat the details of the story of Roger Clemens being acquitted of all charges of perjury in saying to Congress that he did not take performance enhancing drugs.  In a criminal trial the prosecutor must prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.  Wealthy people like Roger Clemens and OJ Simpson can afford to hire attorneys to raise enough doubt so that the jury acquits them.  Roger Clemens was accused in the 2007 Mitchell reports of being injected with steroids and human growth hormone by his personal trainer Brian McNamee.  Apparently his attorneys were able to "demonize" McNamee in the eyes of the jurors.

The one big question - will Clemens be elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame?  What about the others like Barry Bonds, Sammy Sosa, and Mark Mcguire?  Will Clemens be invited to future Yankee Old Timer games?  Time will tell.

I still hate Clemens for the two incidents in 2000 when he threw at Mike Piazza.  He had pinpoint control and threw at Mike's head in the regular season game and threw the broken bat in the World Series.

Monday, June 18, 2012

What Bob Dylan Song Should Paul McCartney Sing?

In March 2009 I reported in this journal that Paul McCartney and Bob Dylan were to record together.  Obviously, this never happened.  Apparently it was a rumor that just never materialized.  Anyway, I wish Sir Paul a very happy 70th birthday, but what Bob Dylan song should he record.  I think back to the Nashville Skyline where a reviewer said about Dylan "That young angry kid has gone romantic."  I am thinking of Tonight I'll Be Staying Here with You would be a good song for Paul to cover.  The version seen below is from the Rolling Thunder Revue.  It is a little rough and not as mellow as the original studio version.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Spending Father's Day with Mr. Lee

Lee and I went to Forest Park earlier this morning to play basketball and walk through the park.  At 9 AM as usual I phone my friend Roy in Brooklyn.  Later today we will go to see Rock of Ages at the local multiplex.  A few years ago we saw the Broadway show.  After that we will go to Ben's Deli in Bayside where today dads can eat for 40 cents.  I think I have given them enough business over the years, so I have earned a free meal from them.

If course I miss my Dad who passed away in 1997.

Below is a Youtube video of Color Him Father by the Winstons.  A few years ago Lee sent an e-mail to Sue  O'Neal to play it on Father's Day on WCBS-FM.  Last night Cousin Brucie played it on SiriusXM.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Random Thoughts of the Day

Right now I am listening to Tell it Like it is by Aaron Neville on Sirius 60s on 6.  This is one good oldie that doesn't get much play on terrestrial radio.

I can tell that my mother is in relatively good health since she kept complaining that Lee needs a haircut.  As soon as we arrived home he took a walk to the barber shop.  Marc, the barber, said that I have very good hair.  It's nice to know that.

I watched part of the Yankees 14 inning game against the Washington Nationals.  This is the first game they have won all season without hitting a home run.

We will likely see the movie Rock of Ages tomorrow.  We saw the Broadway show a few years ago.  There are soundtrack albums for both the show and the movie.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Trying to Amuse Myself While Commuting

It is very important to spend commuting time in a positive way.  If you drive to work, all you can do is listen to the radio and watch the road.  You obviously do not text message while driving.  There are obviously more options when taking public transportation:

  • Reading - I must have read hundreds of books, newspapers and magazines over the years.  My regular reading materials include:
    • The New York Times
    • New York Magazine
    • Sports Illustrated
    • Rolling Stone
    • Chemical and Engineering News
    • Scientific American
    • Discover
    • Goldmine
  • Listening to music via various devices
    • AM/FM walkman with a tape player (I still have one)
    • CD player with a radio
    • iPod Nano with a radio
    • iPhone
    • Insignia portable HD radio
  • Looking for regular commuters - I think I need to explain this method of amusement.  Many people including myself follow a strict schedule as they will leave their home or their job at the same time every day.  Each day I keep my eye open for some of my regulars on the bus to Main Street, #7 line, New Jersey Transit, or the Newark Light Rail. Some people I have seen for years, while most come and go.  I assume that I stop seeing them because their schedule changes or they leave their jobs. Let me describe some of them:
    • The "odd couple" - The husband has a shaved head while the wife appears to be conservative
    • The "Verizon man" - This gentleman wears his company ID.  Some time ago I wrote a journal entry about how he got a summons for walking between subway cars
    • The man with the Nike baseball cap who meets a young heavy set woman at Newark Penn Station
    • There are 4 blind men who regularly take the Newark Light rail
    • "Renee Zellweiger" - This young lady looks like the actress.  She disappeared for about 8 months, but reappeared about a week ago
    • The young girl from Prudential.  About 8 months ago, she was about 8 months pregnant and I thought she would be a stay at home mom.  I saw her today.
    • There are many others who I name after people they resemble.  There seems to be an unwritten rule that strangers don't converse on public transportation.
I have a three day weekend coming up, so I don't have to worry about amusing myself on public transportation until Monday.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Bringing it All Back Home for the third time

Bringing it All Back Home first released in 1965 is certainly one of Bob Dylan's finest albums.  I first  purchased it on vinyl in the 60s.  After I while, I wore out the grooves, so I bought it again on cassette tape in the 1980s.  I still have a record player and a cassette deck, but lack CDs for many Dylan albums.  Last week I started to order two CDs from that reached $23.  I needed $2 more to get the free shipping, so I ordered Bringing it All Back Home for about $7 so I could get the free shipping.

For many of the songs in this album, the listener must extract certain lines and take them out of context.  Here are some examples:

From Maggie's Farm: "Well, I try my best To be just like I am But everybody wants you To be just like them."

From Outlaw Blues: " Don’t ask me nothin’ about nothin’ I just might tell you the truth"

From It's Alright Ma (I'm Only Bleeding): But even the president of the United States Sometimes must have to stand naked

And if my thought-dreams could be seen They’d probably put my head in a guillotine

Sunday, June 10, 2012

A Picture is Worth 1000 Words

Need  I say anything more?

Friday - Yankees 9 Mets 1
Saturday - Yankees 4 Mets 2
Sunday - Yankees 5 - Mets 4

The bullpen and defense lost games 2 and 3.  We need to tighten up the defense in the infield.  Ike Davis and Jason Bay have to start to hit.  I hope the Mets are not going into a bad skid.  They are still over .500

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Congratulations to Don McGee for Becoming New Host of Mixed Bag on WFUV

In any organization whenever a person leaves a position, there is a search someone to succeed not replace the person who has left.  A new person will bring a new personality, somewhat different skills, and an insight to the position.  Today WFUV General Manager Chuck Singleton announced that Don McGee will succeed the late Pete Fornatale as host of Mixed Bag heard on WFUV from 4 PM - 8 PM on Saturdays.  I am very much pleased with this decision.   The management did accept suggestions from listeners on this decision.  I even received personal e-mail from Chuck Singleton thanking me for my feedback.  Would a commercial radio station do this?

I certainly wish Don well in this new endeavor.  I am certain he will preserve the format of Mixed Bag and add his unique personality to the show.  I have always enjoyed listening to him when he filled in for Claudia Marshall or Pete in the past.

I listen to many radio stations on the air, online or on satellite.  I always to find time to listen to WFUV.  Keep up the good work.

The Subway Series is off to a Bad Start for the Mets

Last Friday Johann Santana pitched a no hitter, but last night he gave up 4 home runs as the Mets lost to the Yankees 9 - 1.  Robinson Cano was the star of the game as he hit two home runs.

Game Recap 

When a baseball team has a bad game, they usually have to only wait for one day until they can start again.  The worst team will win at least 50 games, while the best will lose at least 50 games.  The Mets are still bove the .500 mark about 1/3 of the way into the season.  Injuries have hit the Mets hard again this season.

Stay tuned

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Random Thoughts of the Day

The God it's Thursday.  I can say that for the next 10 weeks since we have Friday's off at NJIT until late August.  For several years now the school closes on Friday to save energy.  The university administration stated that $200,000/year is saved.

For about a year the library lets students and faculty borrow iPads.  Since the library is very slow over the summer, I was given an iPad until the middle of August.  This will give me a chance to experiment with it to judge if I should buy one for myself.

The Mets are selling reprints of the ticket to Johann Santana's no-hitter.  It seems they are trying to cash in on this event.  They are selling reprints of the ticket for $50.  If there is a buck to be made, someone will try to make it.  I think they should take the proceeds and give it back to Madoff's victims.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

That's Why God Made the Radio - Beach Boys

This album was just released today.  I could have downloaded it from iTunes or, but I decided to be "old school" and purchase it online.  I am in no hurry for it, so I'll wait for my package in the postal mail.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Remembering Richard Dawson and Family Feud

I found out today that Richard Dawson just passed away at the age of 79.  I will refer my readers to the article in the Los Angeles Times for more information about him.  I remember when I was between jobs in the summer of 1976 first watching his version of the Family Feud.  I always enjoyed games shows and the Family Feud was no exception.  According to the Encyclopedia of TV Games shows he hosted the show from  1976-85.  He was always very funny in his role as host.  After a while though his "schtick" of kissing the woman contestants got somewhat boring.  The show made an encore in 1988 with Ray Combs as the new host.  Richard subsequently returned, but without kissing on the show.  He earlier had a role in Hogan's Heroes.

Over the years my son Lee developed  an interest in the show as the reruns were shown on the Game Show Network.  There were many subsequent hosts including:

  • Louis Anderson
  • John O'Hurley
  • Richard Karn
  • Steve Harvey
There is a syndicated version that is seen on My9 in NYC, while reruns are still seen on the Game Show Network.

Rest in Peace Richard

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Mets 5 Cardinals 0

The Mets were on a roll as they beat the St. Louis Cardinals 5-0.  R.A. Dickey was superb as he shut out the Cards on 7 hits.  I could not expect two no hitters in a row.  The Mets are now 4-0 when I have been at the game this season.  Maybe, I should buy tickets for all remaining home games.

Game Recap

The Mets announced there will be No Han t-shirts available starting Monday for $32 to celebrate the no hitter. If there is always a buck in it for somebody.

Mike Baxter is going on the disabled list after he displaced his right collarbone where it meets his sternum and tore cartilage on the right side of his ribcage after plowing into the wall just after making a catch to sustain Santana's no-hitter.  Reliever Ramon Ramirez injured his hamstring during the celebration after the game.  These players have to learn to control themselves while they are celebrating.

I Waited 50 years for a New York Mets No Hitter

It started out as a normal Friday night as I watched Jeopardy at 7 PM and turned on Bob Radil’s 60s 70s show on Rewound Radio at 7:30.  Bob even played my request for With a Little Help from My Friends by Joe Cocker.  I always check in with Karen and Lee as they were watching the Met game.  At 8:30, it was in the 5th inning as Johann Santana had not allowed a hit.  There was still a long way to go, but I had to watch.  I have been a Met fan since the team’s inception in 1962 and thought that I would never see a no hit game.  On 3 occasions Tom Seaver brought a no hitter into the 9th inning, but lost it.  Several pitchers had no nos before or after they came to the Mets.  Around 2006 or 2007 we went to a game at Shea Stadium where Tom Glavine lost a no hitter after 7 2/3 innings.

In the 6th inning  third base umpire Adrian Johnson ruled a foul ball on a Carlos Beltran shot down the line.  The replay showed that the ball hit the foul line and should have been an extra base hit.  Santana had gained by a bad call, but umpires are human.  Left fielder Mike Baxter made a spectacular catch in the 7th inning as he crashed into the wall.

Finally at 9:49 PM David Freese struck out on pitch #134 and Santana got the first no hitter in Mets history.  I have tickets to this afternoon’s game as I missed this historic event by one day.  Back in 1961, I went to see the Yankees one day before Roger Maris hit his 61st Home Run.  Thus I have missed two historic baseball events by one game.

I decided not to turn on my computer after the game to write a blog entry., but to wait for the next day for my thoughts to settle in.  I did receive a congratulatory tweet from Laura Nygard, a big fan of the Milwaukee Brewers whom I met a few years ago on the Jay Buckley Baseball Tour.  So far this season has exceeded most people’s expectations.  Will Santana’s no hitter encourage the team to over achieve?  Only time will tell.

Friday, June 1, 2012

It Was 45 Years Ago Today

I was a senior at Forest Hills High School anticipating my graduation in a few weeks.  It was the day that Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Heart Club Band was released.  Many consider it the best album that was ever recorded.  In honor of that anniversary please see the video of Joe Cocker singing With a Little Help From My Friends.  I heard both Darren De Vivo and Bob Radil play it today on the radio.

Personal-Journals blog