Wednesday, September 13, 2017

A thought or two.

September is a good month in Mexico.
First of all the rains are tapering off, second it is the month that they celebrate the Day of Independence.
The whole month sort of moves in slooow motion, there are flags everywhere, decorations displayed and even certain food items like Chile En Nogada, is special since it has the colors of the Mexico Flag proudly displayed on the plate.

One of the many reasons Mexico attracts a lot of people relocating from the states is the halting of time in a sort off way. Things move slower here, lots of values that I grew up with are still perpetuated here.
One of them is family or family values.

One of the methods that is used is the celebration of the family meal.  Oh I am sure there are lots of Mexican families that don't do this anymore , but all the ones that I know still use Sunday as a family day.
Sundays for us is a way to stop all the rest of the day to day stuff and just stop all the projects, tasks and routine and chill out.
For many families, it is dinner out.
That's why you see so many restaurants having all the cars parked in front, it's kind of a ritual still.
Sadly, this picture above is what you are starting to see both at home and at restuarnats.

I keep noticing families sitting down and all the kids are stareing at a smart phone screen, half of them texting the other half reading something.
Even the parents will look at that screen a few times during dinner.

Personally, I think that when you go out, or having dinner at home the cell phone has no place at the dinner table.
The meal is suppose to be a moment when people especially families can share the time to catch up on stuff, but in the last decade it has been harder and harder to have intelligent conversations with younger generations because all you hear in response, when they do talk is, " yeah, or huh?"

Conversation is a skill developed over years, but I don't think they teach that in school anymore, I haven't heard of debate classes or public speaking being taught in years. I don't think you have to stand up in front of the class and recite or read things anymore either.  ( Don't want to lower the self esteem of anybody do we).
Cursive writing is no longer taught in schools NOB,  probably in favor of Texting 101.

I guess we are going to the texting form of communications,  what's next, a blanket and a smoking fire?

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Only 52 years ago.

I have been purging unnecessary  things which includes photos, ID cards, licenses and other documents which do no longer have any use other than instantly having the ability to bring me back to the years and location where those cards and ID's represented.
I have found a couple of them, and this one goes back to 1965, which is the Mutual Broadcasting ID card.
Does anyone even remember who the Mutual Broadcasting Network was?

I got that while I was working at a radio station in Santa Rosa, California in the summer of 1965 doing what was called vacation relief.  In those days prior to automation and everything programmed on a computer, you had to actually take records out of their dust jackets and play them on the turntable.  The radio station was KHUM and it was located in studios adjacent to the swimming pool at the El Rancho Tropicana hotel.
The owners of the radio station had the studios located in several rooms that were part of the hotel, that was called a trade out. They would trade  out advertising for the rent of the studios.  And in tern  we would have to ID the station by saying  " This is KHUM, 1580 on your dial, located in the beautiful El Rancho Tropicana Hotel".  Every 30 minutes, and occasionally when the management of the hotel, would doubt the value of the advertising, through in a few 60 second spots now and then throughout the day.

We were an affiliate of Mutual Broadcast which meant that we would broadcast their new feed  on the top of every hour. The audio came from a phone line, which we would coordinate to turn on at the top of the hour, which would then bring 5 minutes of national news.  We also had a teletype machine stuck in a closet that we used for local new, along with stealing the news from a local newspaper  in order to make it look like we actually had a news department when the whole department was anyone who would be reading the news on the half hour.

Doing vacation relief I had hours to cover for other people as they went on vacation. Sometimes I would turn the station on at 5:30 in the morning, other times I would be turning it off at sunset.
The station was a daytime only station which allowed for that frequency to be used by more powerful stations in other parts of the country.  I don't think there are many of those stations still around, most of them either went broke back in the 80's  or 90's when FM overpowered the airways.

In those days, there were still NBC, CBS and ABC networks that provided audio feeds of networks. In addition AP, UPI also provided feeds, at the same time they were doing teletype feeds.

Radio networks started declining in the early 60's. Mutual and NBC both closed down their radio operation in the 90's. ABC lasted until 2007 when it was bought out by Citadel Broadcasting which later merged with Cumulus Media in September of 2011.

Not sure if they are still providing any feeds or not, as of November of 2013 , Mutual, ABC and NBC's radio assets are now owned by Cumulus Media's Westwood One.

CBS still operates its network and as of 2016 which is expected to close down in the next few years. It is in talks with Entercom which will then gobble up the last viable network.

When I was a kid I remember listening to the network radio programs, that were on during the day.  There was Arthur Godfrey and another program I remember was Don McNeals Breakfast Club*.  Both of those had audiences,  in the glory days of radio.   Now the only networks are the ones your computer is connected to.

How things have changed,  Radio to TV, TV to streaming now news on the Internet from a multitude of service providers.
Now anyone with an smart phone can do what audio recorders, tv film cameras, TV video recorders do and then feed it to local or national outlets via the Internet.
Now anyone can be a news correspondent. It was much more prestigious in the 60's though.

And in the words of a famous newscaster,  And that's how it is today on August 15, 2017.

 * Curiosity made me look it up, and this is what I found.

Don McNeill's Breakfast Club was a long-run morning variety show on NBC Blue Network/ABC radio (and briefly on television) originating in Chicago, Illinois. Hosted by Don McNeill, the radio program ran from June 23, 1933 through December 27, 1968. McNeil's 35½-year run as host remains the longest tenure for an M.C. of a network entertainment program, surpassing Johnny Carson (29½ years) on The Tonight Show and Bob Barker (34⅔ years) on The Price Is Right, albeit split between radio and television, whereas the latter two were television only.

Friday, July 14, 2017

They don't teach being smart in school.

I have written in the past where I have overheard people complaining about several things in Mexico.  Things like,  The service is slow or that the streets are in bad condition or the one that really tweaks me is that all the people live in poverty. That's just to list a few.

It was hard for me to believe that visitors to this country can be so stupid as to not understand or see the big picture.  I thought it was just a few random tourists or visitors.   I saw this today and this confirms that there are lots of very stupid people in the world.  I think from reading this you can tell where these people are from.

And they carry on the gene pool.

These are actual comments and complaints left by clients of Thomas Cook Travel.

1. “On my holiday to Goa in India, I was disgusted to find that almost every restaurant served curry. I don’t like spicy food.”

2. “They should not allow topless sunbathing on the beach. It was very distracting for my husband who just wanted to relax.”

3. “We went on holiday to Spain and had a problem with the taxi drivers as they were all Spanish.”

4. “We booked an excursion to a water park but no-one told us we had to bring our own swimsuits and towels. We assumed it would be included in the price.”

5. “The beach was too sandy. We had to clean everything when we returned to our room.”

6. “We found the sand was not like the sand in the brochure. Your brochure shows the sand as white but it was more yellow.”

7. “It’s lazy of the local shopkeepers in Puerto Vallartato close in the afternoons. I often needed to buy things during ‘siesta’ time — this should be banned.”

8. “No-one told us there would be fish in the water. The children were scared.”

9. “Although the brochure said that there was a fully equipped kitchen, there was no egg-slicer in the drawers.”

10. “I think it should be explained in the brochure that the local convenience store does not sell proper biscuits like custard creams or ginger nuts.”

11. “The roads were uneven and bumpy, so we could not read the local guide book during the bus ride to the resort. Because of this, we were unaware of many things that would have made our holiday more fun.”

12. “It took us nine hours to fly home from Jamaica to England. It took the Americans only three hours to get home. This seems unfair.”

13. “I compared the size of our one-bedroom suite to our friends’ three-bedroom and ours was significantly smaller.”

14. “The brochure stated: ‘No hairdressers at the resort.’ We’re trainee hairdressers and we think they knew and made us wait longer for service.”

15. “When we were in Spain, there were too many Spanish people there. The receptionist spoke Spanish, the food was Spanish. No one told us that there would be so many foreigners.”

16. “We had to line up outside to catch the boat and there was no air-conditioning.”

17. “It is your duty as a tour operator to advise us of noisy or unruly guests before we travel.”

18. “I was bitten by a mosquito. The brochure did not mention mosquitoes.”

19. “My fiancĂ©e and I requested twin-beds when we booked, but instead we were placed in a room with a king bed. We now hold you responsible and want to be re-reimbursed for the fact that I became pregnant. This would not have happened if you had put us in the room that we booked.”