Archive for September, 2012

Another great DeathSquad podcast. If you aren’t familiar with Sam Tripoli and the Naughty Show, you are not into podcasts. Or you aren’t into porn chicks, comedians and general debauchery. I laugh out loud to this show at some point every time I watch it. The guests are always slightly crazy or ridiculously hot, but usually both. This particular episode was hilarious. Gareth Reynolds and Dave Anthony join the show and had me crying laughing. Dave Anthony also has a podcast of his own with Greg Behrendt called Walking the Room. In this episode, Tripoli discovers a new catch phrase “Bringing the Wood” and for a good twenty minutes it is discussed at length. Well, sorta, Tripoli said it first on Joe Rogan’s Joe Rogan Experience podcast a few hours before this podcast began. I’m guessing T-shirts are in the works. Oh, and Geno of LASpeedWeed, the podcast’s most visible sponsor gets too high off his own product. He just laughs and stares blankly for most of the hour or so. Green Crack is a helluva drug, I’m guessing. I posted this because I enjoy this style of humor. If you are easily offended, don’t watch these guys. If you are easily offended, you probably need to watch these guys. Past guests have included a Who’s Who of pornstars, Too Short and a lot of LA based comedians. If you want more after watching this episode, check out past episodes at http://thenaughtyshow.tumblr.com

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I graduated with a degree in Journalism in 2000. And I don’t recognize it anymore.

The 24 hour news cycle has devastated the profession in ways that have yet to be detected. Part of the problem is the Hell-spawned Beast we call a news cycle. The second head of that dreaded demon is the growth of reality television. There are reputable news men and women out there, but few and far between. I’ve worked in a newsroom and have seen newbie reporters crack under pressure. Cracks can show themselves in the form of error, hyperbole and fluff or filibuster. As a reporter, the deadline is akin to the waning 24 second shot clock or the fourth quarter buzzer for athletes. It’s ‘give me your best effort and let’s see how you shake out’. The best journalists, in all their capacities to include broadcast, print and radio, are consistently Kobe Bryant in the fourth. When these cream of the crop professionals meet up with DEADLINE, they create accurate, timely and relevant products. These professionals, most of the time, have graduated from some of the best journalism schools in the country, have double/triple/quadruple checked facts and present that information in the most palatable way for mass consumption. Then there are the fly-by-night pros. These journalists opine without source, speak contrarily to boost ratings and value their Twitter feed like crack/methamphetamine addicts. The drug of information used to be pure, but is now mixed with half-truths, opinions and flat out lies. And I have to admit, I have formulated my opinion about certain topics based on particular reporters/analysts/bloggers views. Lately, I’ve had to take a step back and recognize that journalism is not what it used to be. Many people say anybody can be a reporter, cameraman or news person with a cell phone, now. I disagree. Anyone can report, but only a reporter can give the news. I say that to say this. I learned media law, ethics, story structure and how it all meshes. The problem with ESPN, FOX and CNN is that they have to feed the BEAST-24hr-cycle EVERYDAY. I watched this clip from one of my favorite shows, ESPN’s First Take and it got my juices flowing.

Several valid points were made by NBA Analyst Jalen Rose, former columnist and reporter Skip Bayless and my personal favorite columnist and ESPN personality Stephen A. Smith. Rose pointed out name calling players, judging elite athletes and resented that his professional basketball credentials were questioned after spending 20-plus years in the sport. Journalism of 2012 has become a profession of entertainment over substance, much like reality television has gained a strangle hold on mainstream television audiences. Controversy sells. Conflict sells. Personalities sell. If you can gain a following, you are elevated to your own show, endorsements and merchandise. There is room for that, but the key is recognizing entertainment and recognizing real news. Day after day, I watch (because I like to be entertained mostly) First Take and the heavily opinionated diatribes of Skip and Stephen A. These guys are in the business of selling a product, First Take. They get paid for their opinion, but being journalists they have to have source material. That line is very gray, though. I can call a player GaSoft (Paul Gasol), a “Team Obliterator”(Terrell Owens) and LeBrick (LeBron James) based off of performance. Amare Stoudemire, formerly of the Phoenix Suns, now with the New York Knicks, called Gasol, soft in a television interview = source. Terrell Owens had several well publicized conflicts with coaches and teammates and moved from team to team = source. Lebron James missed a buzzer beater hard off the backboard = LeBrick James. Or does it? It depends on what you’re selling. In all these cases, source material can be substantiated, but should it be said? Absolutely, is the answer the world has accepted. They wouldn’t want it any other way, now. I want my twitter feed, rss feed, television broadcast and website to have as many eyes on it as possible. Glen Beck, Rush Limbaugh, Bill Maher, Jon Stewart, Bill O’Reilly and the aforementioned members of First Take do one thing really well: FEED THAT BEAST.

Seriously, Non-religiously

 

 

I’m not sure what week it is. I have been sending out applications to schools in Asia for a few, definitely more than a few weeks. Since my last blog, I have completed a 100 hour Teaching English to Students of Other Languages (TESOL) course. It was comprehensive and hopefully, will give me a leg up in the hiring process. A lot of memories of sitting in public school came flooding back to me while I pored over notes about past and present tense conjugation. I also remembered classes I took in Journalism school that particularly annoyed me. All in all it is means to an end. I want to be a professional teacher and world traveler. Everything else is gravy in the rice. Rice is good, but rice with gravy is something else. I got my newly minted and renewed passport in the mail last week. So now I can check that off the list. I am waiting for a FBI background investigation that I submitted around the same time. Hopefully, I will get that back in the next week or so. Some say it takes as long as twelve weeks, but I’m thinking positively. Another thing that is in a holding pattern is my application to Graduate School at Arizona State University (for TESOL). I have all but one of three professionals that promised a letter of recommendation who has submitted them to the college. The deadline is Oct. 1, so I’m debating on whether to find a new pro and keep it moving or not. In the meantime, I am starting a physical training routine after years of inactivity. I want to be in good health when I finally get to Asia, after all. I, originally, thought Korea would be my first stop, but lately have given teaching in China serious consideration. I’m back in the mix. I like the anticipation of the unknown. I like the idea of preparing for the action, but knowing I will have to make adjustments and adapt. I’m only 35 years old and I do this well. Everything is coming together, despite my perceptions of inactivity. I will get everything done and will make this life change. It’s do or die. Not only is this a departure from my previous avenues of employment, it is a way to shock the system and not feel burned out by life. I’m doing this to become a better person and to become a better professional. I’ve always been a professional, but I feel I only coasted along. I’m all in with this career move. I want this more than I have any job. Ironically, it might not be ANYTHING like I imagine it. And I welcome that.