Rooney/Crossley Redux

I’d been asked to listen to these two shows again, so I listened to the programs from yesterday.

Emily Rooney on April 15 (it’s nearly impossible to find good show notes links on the WGBH website, so you’ll have to find them yourself) was about gambling.  I actually liked the discussion on gambling in Detroit, where she talked with a representative from the Greektown Casino and a minister whose church is across the street from that casino.  I thought that she could have been a bit tougher on the gambling proponent from Michigan (Jake Miklojcik), who was talking about how much the Greektown Casino has done…except for the fact that it’s in Chapter 11 bankruptcy.  The minister had a lot of very good questions, and made some good points, but none of it was explored in much depth.

There was also no discussion of what the putting a casino in a city (like Worcester) could mean for existing restaurants and/or music venues.  We keep hearing about the (positive) economic impact from casinos or the (negative) social ills, but we’re not getting a more nuanced discussion of what this could means for cities.  Perhaps that discussion happened on another program on WGBH this week, but I would have been interested to hear from it on this program, since much of the discussion was about an urban casino.

My husband had caught the Emily Rooney show a week or two ago, and he noted that she sounds very bored.  It’s tough for me to tell, because her voice is not obviously enthusiastic in the way that Callie Crossley’s is.

Because I couldn’t deal with more casino discussion, I listened to the Callie Crossley show from Wednesday, April 14 (again, I can’t find a decent show-notes link), which had a great discussion with a guy who put up an LED sign at an MBTA bus stop that tells when the bus will be coming.  If you read the Boston Globe article, you’ve gotten the gist, but the guest (Benjamin Resner) was so engaged and informative that you might want to have a listen.

I also noticed that Callie Crossley didn’t have any callers; the last time I listened, I felt that she wasn’t very good at handling callers to the show.  But I have my own bias against call-in radio shows; I think the vast majority have callers just to confirm the host’s point of view, or as filler for those who’ve run out of ideas.  I will say that both of these shows must have excellent producers, because I find the guests to be quite good on the whole.

I may listen to one or both programs again if there’s a topic of great interest to me, but they just aren’t my style.  During the day, I tend to listen to the BBC World Service (because, really, if my choices are Emily Rooney or the adorable Gareth Mitchell, who do you think I’m going to choose?).  Which brings me to my next topic…

I almost never listen to the radio during the morning or afternoon commute (barring Crosstracks on Friday mornings, which is as close to heaven on earth as one can get) because I’m usually listening to audiobooks.  But the other afternoon, I figured I’d turn on the radio since it’s been years since I listened to commerical radio.  I came away from that experience with two questions and an observation:

1) Are Stone Temple Pilots still popular?  Because I caught them not once but twice in my short commute.

2) Is metal dead?  Seriously.

3) If you’re a fan of Ke$ha, I believe you can just surf radio stations from one “TiK ToK” to the next.

I actually like the song, because in my line of work, sometimes I need to listen to mindless dance music with a good beat.  (My work is somewhat akin to that of a nightclub bouncer.)   So, for all you fans of bad dance pop, or good literature, or both, may I present Paul Muldoon’s excellent discussion of this song: