Happy Independence Weekend!
I hope you feel as free and safe as I do.
My fill-in for Brian Finneran on 680 the Fan was a lusty success.
Everyone in town was talking about it.
I was a little rusty on the air. Haven’t been on in awhile live. Had to figure out the rhythms of lead host Steak Shapiro. Not easy.
After a few minutes of figuring that out, the big sparks of controversy were flying as a major local sports franchise became upset at my remarks. I wasn’t even trying to be upsetting. I just answered the questions given to me in an honest way.
Here’s how it went down:
Steak Shapiro introduced the topic of the new Phillips Arena remodel, and how the Hawks are promising big attractions to get more people to spend $$ to see the Hawks not win a championship.
Steak asked me what I thought of the Hawks adding Top Golf stalls to the in game experience.
Now, I do enjoy Top Golf. It’s just that I don’t need to go to play it at Phillips Arena after paying $$ to see a Hawks game. When I want to play Top Golf…I’ll head to Top Golf.
This is the same thinking that put a mini-golf course right next to Turner Field some years ago to draw “families.” Ghetto Golf lasted 2 minutes and then was converted to rat storage.
Steak asked me what I thought of the Hawks/Phillips plan to put a black barbershop in the arena run by a guy named Killer Mike. At first I thought this was satire. It fails to make sense on so many different cultural levels. First of all, I’m bald and white.
Second of all, I don’t want a guy named Killer Mike putting scissors to my head. Don’t get me wrong. I have no problem with having Mike as my barber. In fact, my barber when I was a kid with Peter Brady hair was Mike. He was Italian Mike, so he could have been a killer too, but he wasn’t blatant about it to customers.
Third of all, I looked on Wikipedia and it said Killer Mike was a rapper and social and political activist. It doesn’t take too many paragraphs to figure out that Killer Mike is, at best, sympathetic to those who shoot our cops. How did this guy get a franchise in Phillips Arena?
Fourth of all, are the Hawks that bad at basketball that not even black people will go unless there is a barbershop on site? Criminy!
Anyway, I told Steak that this was a most ridiculous idea. He was not happy with me. I think he’s close friends with the owners.
“Yeah, but what about this?” Steak asked me, taking another crack at helping the Hawks get my OTP ticket business. “Would you be interested in the Zac Brown Cafe?”
I like Zac Brown. But unless he’s there at the Hawks game cooking the food and singing songs while doing it, there’s really no point to paying $$ for Hawks tickets to eat Zac Brown branded food. And how close is it to Killer Mike’s barbershop? Clumsy marketing.
I told Steak that I’m an OTP guy. I love the suburbs. That’s where I’ve lived all of my life. I like the quiet and the prices. Cities are too chaotic and overpriced for me. Cities are run by rodents, by and large. Suburbs are run by civilized people. That’s my experience.
The only thing that the Hawks could do to get me to spend any money on a trip to Phillips Arena is win….WIN!!!!! Whattya think o’ that? Just WIN! Get into the finals. Win a championship. 60 years of failure to WIN! doesn’t cut it OTP.
Listener after listener started calling into the show. “Larry is saying what I’ve been thinking all along,” they cried.
“We’ve rarely gotten this many passionate calls on a topic for this long,” said Steak Shapiro. It was marvelous.
The last time I bought Hawks tickets, they were in the middle of that crazy WIN streak 2 years ago. The place was packed even though it was against Brooklyn. And there was no barbershop, or golf, or Zac Brown anywhere to be seen. I’m content with Harry the Hawk dunking off the trampoline as long as they WIN goddangit!
Well, this caused quite an uproar back at the Hawks camp. One of their marketing brass called into the show later to denounce me as a “cynic,” which is the wrong word. I think he meant “skeptic.” I was skeptical of the Hawks marketing plan.
The cynic, if anybody, is corporate entertainment moguls who think pandering to multiculturalism is a way to get a potential OTP customer into the building. And what kind of salesman listens to potential customers opinions and then yells at them for not kissing their ass? Unbelievable.
The Hawks main problem may well be that they are starting to act like their neighbors at CNN. CNN doesn’t see themselves as citizens, but as the controller of citizens. Citizen Negation Network. Being next to CNN was an advantage in the 90s. It is no longer the 90s. I want to be proud of CNN, but that is not possible any longer.
CNN is now strong arming citizens who mock them with funny wrestling videos
CNN has attempted for over 7 months to unseat a fairly elected president.
The twinkly boys that are producers at CNN were caught on tape telling the undercover reporters in the popular James O’Keefe videos that the “Russia giving the election to Trump” narrative is complete bullshit.
CNN is now the cultural equivalent of a tape being discovered that Tyler Perry ate Jane Fonda’s ass while Ted Turner was blowing Tyler. Everyone would be repulsed.
Watching the CNN scandals unfold as they try to best the President, I get the same sick feeling I would get if I watched the Falcons go 0-16, or listening to Michael Stipe speak. Please take this out of here!
How does the Atlanta Tourism Board handle this? They must be ready to behead themselves. Or maybe they watch CNN so they don’t know about the scandals. Maybe they’re bewildered when angry tourists call to complain about CNN and they wind up hanging up on the tourists. I feel sorry for the tourist board and for the people of Atlanta. CNN is a flaming pile. An Eric Robert Rudolph statue in it’s place would draw less negativity.
So just win Hawks. The odds are not looking good, so I’ll reserve laying down the money for now. I don’t know if you have it in ya, but if it turns out you do, I’ll be more than happy to buy some sweet tickets.
And I do have the money now. As of July 1, I am employed by Dickey Broadcasting (680 The Fan), and the legendary The Regular Guys Show is set to return to the Atlanta airwaves at SunTrust Park sometime in July, I’m told.
Hate to be mysterious…no, wait, I LOVE being mysterious, but the truth is Dickey Broadcasting has a huge logistics chore ahead moving their current stations and personnel from the depressing Cumulus building to the shiny, happy studios at the Battery. Until that move, and the testing of the new equipment is complete, I have no studio from which to do the show. After that, my co-host must be signed, and THEN we can get going making Atlanta radio fun again. Worth the wait.
And I thank you.