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I'll call this page "Stories I like to tell too often".   When I'm so motivated, I'll add a story about something I've done. 

While I was Telecom Manager at The Box Music Network "Music Television You Control" I got a rather odd phone call.  A friend of mine, Erik, forced me to listen to his Jerky Boys CDs.   They were a bunch of guys who made basically prank phone calls.   Their goal was to get a reaction from the person they were calling.  Erik loved these guys.   Doing a few calls like this myself (before the days of Caller ID) I was getting more into it also.

So this one day I get a call.  It sounds like someone doing a bad Jerky Boys imitation.   I go along with it thinking it's someone Erik got to call me.   I'm finding the humor in what the guy is saying so I sort of play along with a couple jabs going back to him.   He knows where I work, who our receptionist is and what I do at The Box, so I know it's got to be someone on the inside having fun.   The call end (when I think he's bored of me) and go on with work.  Weeks later I had almost forgotten about it until one of the producers I worked with asked me if I had gotten a weird call.  I told him I had.  He then told me it was the Jerky Boys.  I thought he was kidding.  But no, it was really them and now they needed for me to sign a release so they could use the recording in their next CD.  A few phone calls later and they want me to sign the release in return for a shiny bright new dollar coin.  Ah, yeah, a whole buck for my signature.   I hold out for more and they make it $100.   I agree and sign, but knowing I got a deal since there was no way I was going to be on their new CD.   There was nothing funny about my call.  I didn't blow up, hang up or yell, all must-have's in their style of humor.  

Well, I was wrong and Ray the phone guy is track 15 on the Jerky Boys 4.  I still don't think it's all that funny.

Growing up in the 1970s, Y100 was the very popular Top 40 station.   Their morning show was always funny and a great way to start the day.   "Tanner in the Morning" was the host.   "Gets you up and gets you off, Tanner in the Morning"  Could you even say that on the air today?   His sidekick was G. Michael McKay.  He did quite a few voices on the show.  If you happen to remember the JJ Moose car insurance commercials, that's him.  I'm slow to wake up, so I would listen to them to sort of laugh myself awake.  

One morning they got a call from some guy who's girlfriend was named "Christmas".   I guess the guys thought this was funny, so they sort of teased him about the name.  This went on through a few breaks so I guess it was sort of a running joke of the morning.   I had already called into the station a few times to contribute a little humor.  So I came up with a line and called it in.  They of course didn't do any callers live.   But sometimes, if they liked it, they would play the call back on the next break.  I didn't really expect them to use my call.  But they did, and it was the last thing said about the whole series of jokes about him and his girlfriend.  I was honored that they used my line as the final punch line.   "For one guy in South Miami, Christmas really does come more than once a year!"

While I was working for a Cable TV company, I think in the mid 1980's, I found myself at O'Hare airport in Chicago on business. I had about 4 hours to kill before my flight.  So I decided to go for a walk around the airport.   This airport has some interesting architecture and history.  When I was a kid I really got into the "Airport" series of movies.   (This could be why "Airplane", the movie that mocks the Airport series is my favorite comedy movie).   I think it was the original Airport that took place at O'Hare.  They filmed a number of indoor scenes in the building I was now walking around in.   I remember a very 1960's terrazzo and chrome balcony office area overlooking the passenger area.  I was right there looking up at it.   I walked around for maybe 20 minutes. 

I was strictly staying in the passenger areas.   But with 4 hours to kill I wasn't in a hurry.  Just slowly walking around the airport, looking at the building.   Mind you, this is way pre 9/11.

I was stopped and questioned by two police officers.  Turns out I was seen and reported to them.  I think my "Airport" story was geeky enough to rule me out as a threat to national security.  I was told to stay in the gate area and to not move until my flight was called.

Lesson learned:  Money spent on expensive airports will only cause security problems later.

Speaking of O'Hare, a few years later I was on an SCTE committee looking at how Cable TV could use the PCS bands to build a cellular system.   The meetings were held monthly at the hotel at O'Hare.  I flew up one day, stayed over night in the hotel, attended my committee meeting, then flew home, without ever stepping outside.  The hotel is connected to the airport terminals by tunnel.  I would open my curtain and watch the snow in the winter and realize I didn't even need to take a heavy coat on the trip.  I sort of considered myself a 'jetsetter' by making this flight every month to talk to my peers about technology.

Once the weather turned warm I did spend an extra day checking out the city. 

Hocus Pocus by the group Focus is one of the best Rock/Yodel songs of 1973.  And you may quote me on that.

Ideas I need to work on:

Broadcasting stories

    WVUM running on an exit sign

    WVUM providing the phone line for Love94.

Blimp base

Moving a police repeater before Hurricane David.

Fixing an RT for the phone company


Except for portions owned by others, Copyright: Ray Vaughan, 2008