Friday, November 9, 2012

Knot Gnus

The other morning, working myself back into old routines after a really long break from the gym rat jive, I decided to use one of the many other services of the Slacker subscription I bought for my smartphone (though how much more as I am the owner is debatable I suppose). I decided to tune into ABC News and discovered I had a choice of seven-okay, actually six, since one of them was labeled 'myABC News' and I had never listened to it so it must have been someone else's.

Back when they had Frank Reynolds, ABC was a force in news. They might not have ever been in first place in the TV wars, but they gave a  good as good as they got. But in the brave new world of every single thing imaginable on demand, that's not gonna make the suits on the 47th through 51st floors in accounting smile and that's the name of that tune. I skipped over ABC Mens' News since I couldn't imagine what that would be and suffered an same imagination shortage when offered my chance to listen to the distaff counterpart.

There was an ABC channel for just health-no desire to find out what that would be like on a 24/7 clock so I went with plain old ABC news which has stories from around the world and around the block plus a decent mix of well-written and produced financial and political news stories. I happily pedalled my heart out on the exercise bike while finding out again, that Android is the operating system in 75 percent of all smartphones (I love  a winner and I think I, too, have an android unless they're taking people who have them out to be shot and then not so much). Life was good.

Not quite the audio equivalent of posting endless pictures of kittens on Facebook-my favorite part of that always being trying to see the difference in a half dozen pictures and giving up while all kinds of comments below them lead me to believe I'm an oaf-but the programming was reasonably interesting and there were genuine items of information. In a universe with a yellow sun, it was news in a broad sense of the word.

Then came the DWTS Update-complete with its own sounder. DWTS is a TV show with people who dance, but not for a living. In their minds they are famous and that's good as a healthy self-image can be important to the growth of someone totally lacking in any skills, just ask Paris Hilton or one (or all, come to think of it) of the Kardashians. The show's producers want me to believe these folks are famous as well. I will have none of it. When I spend fifteen minutes watching a show, asking everyone around me 'where do I know that person from?' it means you are not famous, dancing boy or girl.

The 'update' went on for about four minutes! We're talking about 30 calories at 18 mph of pedaling my friend, and was complete with a shocking reveal that one of the semi-famous ones had been dropped on her face by her partner the day before the show (GASP!). Another had to learn to dance with someone other than her first partner because (WAITFORIT!) he had hurt his neck 'but the pair used his choreography'. What a trooper! I could feel tears welling up but it turned out that was because of the bicycle seat which is very uncomfortable.

I kept thinking about the hundreds of thousands of people living near ABC radio stations in the Northeast with little or no electricity, no potable water and food. Bet they didn't get to dance or watch these pathetic never-wases and has-beens do so, either. And then there are the ten thousand other stories to include our continuing alptraum in Afghanistan and this crap/pap app is what the ABC News folks package for slacker subscribers? WPP like drinking domestic bottled water. Get Peter Jennings out on the set and remember just because we're hypnotised that don't mean we can't dance.
-bill kenny

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