Archive for the ‘other news’ Category

SF Chronicle in full jackass mode

Wednesday, January 24th, 2007

Well, at first it seemed like fun just waiting around to see how long it would take for our clue-crippled local rag to lift its slumbering head and groggily mention a major radio deal affecting (a) the #2 station in its “market” and (b) the #9 station, which also happens to be the top-rated “classical” station in the country. But as the days wear on, it becomes drearily apparent that this is simply going to become a tale not told by an idiot – or any idiot in town, it would seem – and it’s less & less fun, and ever more an exercise in open-mouthed astonishment.

Yes indeed, as of this writing, fully six days after it was announced, you may search the on-line presence of not only the Chron, but the Examiner, the Oakland Trib, and the local tabloids as well, for any hint of the swap that sends the unspeakable KDFC from the Mormons into the hands of Entercom – in the very same week that the latter was all over the news as owners of a not-quite-as-inadvertently-homicidal-as-they-might-wish Sacramento station. Is there any satisfaction in what amounts to scooping the entire local “news” apparatus? Hardly, unless one counts vertigo, nausea, and brain freeze as forms of satisfaction.

So for those who haven’t been paying attention because they assume the crack reporting teams at their local papers can be trusted to do it for them, note that Bonneville is trading two San Francisco giants of aural anaesthesia, #2 KOIT and #9 KDFC, and a minor-leaguer, #20-or-thereabouts KMAX, for three big Seattle stations and four in Cincinnati.

I guess it shows that KDFC has been more effective than anyone suspected, since it seems to have succeeded in rendering the entire San Francisco media establishment comatose. Oh well – I guess death by a steady diet of numbingly third-rate sewing-machine music and smarmy condescension is less painful than death by water.

UPDATE Saturday 01-27: Nine days and counting.

Apply [palm] directly to the forehead

Friday, October 20th, 2006

I rarely comment on stuff like this, but if you thought the brazen exploitation in Chevy’s “our country” truck ads was shameless, brace yourself for the polyphonic-Amen “IE7 is here” radio ads from Microsoft. Don’t bother asking “how do these people sleep at night?” – or “look at themselves in the mirror,” or any of the other figures traditionally spoken by those who retain the ability to be astonished at the depths to which human beings can sink. Quite easily they sleep, you can be sure. These are The Hollow Men, the whisper of whose dried voices are indeed as

rats’ feet over broken glass
In our dry cellar

Tower falls; codswallop analysis prevails

Wednesday, October 11th, 2006

In 1967 it was worth the hassle of a long Greyhound ride to San Francisco and an interminable Muni ride to Columbus & Bay if you were 14 and stuck in Redwood City. Right from its opening the bins at Tower Records had LPs for $2.99, but more important, they held unparalleled depth – especially if you were a classical nerd discovering R & B. Tower lasted 46 years; not bad.

But please, could we have common sense enough not to swallow the hogwash about how da innernet and da ipods and da big box stores done put Tower in the grave? A chorus of stories peddled the same nonsense about Cody’s a couple of months ago, ignoring the blindingly obvious: Cody’s is surviving on Fourth Street and in SF – the Telegraph store was done in by my hometown’s abject inability to deal with reality. The city’s ideological rigidity won’t let it lift more than a cursory pinky to help see that people might actually be able to get into and out of the Telegraph neighborhood quickly and safely, and in Cody’s itself the same sclerosis – as apparent on the shelves as on the surrounding sidewalks – didn’t help. As contributing factors, ecommerce and Wal-Mart probably rank well below the dollar price of gas and the psychic price of relentless assault.

If Tower had paid just a little more attention to reality, and while doing so paused opening up new stores long enough to revise the existing ones, they might have avoided succumbing – not to the net, but to little Amoeba.