Sunday, June 30, 2002

Rosemary Clooney Dead

Talk about mixed emotions. I am sitting in my living room at 1:30 in the morning, watching what appears to be a broadcast of Brian Setzer's live set from Tokyo taped earlier this year on my local public television station - apparently, not to be interrupted by pledge breaks - when I pick up the computer and stumble across the news that Rosemary Clooney has passed on from complications from cancer at the age of 74.

Rosie had an interesting career, though her exploits in recent years have come mostly on the coattails of the success of her handsome acting nephew, George. (George's dad is Rosemary's brother, Nick Clooney, a veteran Cincinnati TV personality who was most recently an on-air host for AMC before that channel got totally screwed up with young-turk hosts and ads. The elder Clooney also hosted "The Money Maze". But I digress.) We vividly remember Rosie's turn as a confused homeless woman wandering into the E.R. from time to time and bumping heads with Dr. Doug Ross (George's character) and the other denizens of the E.R. But it was ultimately the music that she'll be remembered for, starting with the William Saroyan-Ross Bagdasarian composition "Come on-a My House" and weaving through a succession of less heralded works. I heard a mid-90's Rosie on the radio not long ago interpreting the Dave Frishberg tune "Let's Eat Home" and she still sounded marvelous. Bye, Rosie.

Saturday, June 29, 2002

New Home For IRPinball

IRPinball lives on at, for the time being. Its host, is no more. The new site isn't going to be as content rich as previous, unfortunately. IRPinball has also come under attack by the lawyers, specifically with reference to machines manufactured by Gottlieb which are still under trademark/copyright - even though the company doesn't even exist any more.

Tuesday, June 25, 2002

And Another Thing...

If I walk by that damn sports jersey kiosk and see another jersey with a fake looking "JETER 2" on the back, I am going to rip it off the rack, tear it into a billion little thread shreds, make the clerk eat every single one of them, and maybe think about paying for it after all of that.

Hear me now, all you idiots in the sports clothing business.


And as Don West used to say on Shop At Home, "That's just the way I feel."

Monday, June 24, 2002

More NJT Roadeo Pix

We've added the other two showbuses from the NJT Roadeo, thanks to a suggestion from an employee of Big Tree Garage in Nutley. So your 1922 is now up on the web as well as the two MCI's, the 7666 and 7788. Look for em at the NJT page. Yes, putting only one of em up wasn't the fair thing to do. Congrats, BTW, to all of this year's Roadeo winners (whoever you are... I had to leave before the winners were announced!)

Saturday, June 22, 2002

NJT Bus Roadeo Reports Forthcoming

Later today or tonight we will have a selection of pictures for you from today's NJ Transit Bus Roadeo. Howell Garage has traditionally been an exclusively MCI facility (with a Nova Bus tucked away in the corner for some reason, and a Flxible still hanging around), but now, the facility is being more and more populated by the new 45-foot D4500 buses from the 7400 series. We have pix and serials of some of em. (BTW other web sites have been noting these buses as D4501's. I looked at the builder's plates. All the ones I saw are D4500's.)

Wednesday, June 19, 2002

More Web Stupidity

The morons who invented the pop-up ad now have a new tactic: moving ads. The ads move so fast you cannot get to the X to close the box in time. However, if you right-click on the IE entry corresponding to the ad and select Close very quickly, you can keep the ad's exposure to a minimum. Me, I have gotten very good at not looking directly at the ads.

Saturday, June 15, 2002

Tomorrow's Search Engine Today!

For years, Altavista functioned as my home page because I always liked the search engine. However, the preponderance of pop up ads on Altavista has forced a switch. I now park my browser at Yahoo! because there are no popups or other annoyances. However, for searches I have recently taken to using Google. Just a peek into how I browse, for the two of you who care.

Friday, June 14, 2002

Name That Toon

Personal to the two ladies asking in tandem about the Bugs Bunny cartoon with the horse in the airplane: it was "Super Rabbit". I cannot send you the return e-mail with this information.

Wednesday, June 12, 2002

Tuesday, June 11, 2002

Why No Ads?

I'm beginning to think that not only is the Internet not going to be the cash cow with which anyone can get rich, but I am also starting to believe that Internet advertising is more an intrusion and an annoyance than an asset to build a business, and may even steer people away from the intended result.

I was surfing a nationally-known sports information web site and was interrupted by the forgettable image of Mr. Peanut giding across the screen in a sailboat. With no way possible of turning it off. For the first time ever on the Internet, I felt trapped.

You can bet I'll probably be scarfing down store-brand peanuts after this episode, in much the same way you probably won't find me booking a trip through Orbitz or installing an X10 webcam or clicking on one of the multitude of fake looking Windows dialogue boxes masquerading as ads, designed to ensnare the less savvy among us.

But do you know what the clincher was? The relentless promotion of the movie "Death To Smoochy" on the website. In the hands of more capable filmmakers, I would have embraced the film's theme, which was basically a major rag on Barney.

The fact that "Death To Smoochy" went down as one of Hollywood's biggest bombs - not even grossing into eight figures - justified to me that web advertising has little if no value. And I sat through all these ads for what?

That's why, kids, you'll never see ads on this site, or any others I have involvement with. It is worth to me the price of paying for web space to not have to put you through a series of pop-ups that interrupt the real reason you come to this site - for the content.

Sunday, June 09, 2002

Mackey's Packing

Our family name seems to have lent itself to a look. The new FX police drama "The Shield" features as one of its main characters rogue cop Vic Mackey, as played by Michael Chiklis. For the role, Chiklis, who previously played portly pasty types like "Commish" Tony Scali, John Belushi and Curly Howard, has buffed himself up and has shaved his balding head. The look is quite striking, especially with those dark glasses Mackey likes to wear. It looks kind of like a Bruce Willis thing, especially with the shaved head, but I think Chiklis takes it to the next level and makes it - dare I say it? - very Mackey indeed!