"if it's good news, it must be someone else's"

Friday, August 15, 2008

634. farewell mike and the mad dog

they have been a new york staple in sports radio talk for nineteen years, broadcasting five hours a day during the heralded afternoon commute time slot.
mike, the court magistrate.
mad dog, the court jester.
mike, whose arrogance is only trumped by his ego, the size of which is only dashed by his waistline.
mad dog, whose illogical, english-mangled rants are proof positive he has only a face for radio—certainly not a voice.
mike, forever the ollie, and mad dog, forever the stanley.
in short, a pair that would never find each other on harmony.com, and that's why the whole thing worked!

and for years i listened when i could, as did my son and brothers.
and they gave us pause to talk and laugh and impersonate and complain and argue together—the stuff that helps build those special father-son, and sibling bonds.
couldn't get enough!
and for that i will always be grateful to mike and the mad dog.

well, they ended their partnership yesterday in, what will be to the show's faithful, a talk-bonanza of contract, personality and power theories, no more seedy nor virtuous than the more notorious sports break-ups the boys just love to opine over for hours on end, with or without facts—incidentals in the world of talk radio.

the news does not come as a shock.
the truth is, i haven't been listening to them with the same allegiance for a while now.
and i have to assume i'm not the only one.
their recent hints of turmoil in the studio have become tiring and self-indulging, kinda like favre and the packers, and we all know how that ended.

i mean don't get me wrong, there are still moments.
whenever mad dog dips into "the black athlete well" with his rather white bucket, you know only "good radio" is about to unfold.
or whenever mike sets his intellectual sights on the affairs of a staffer "behind the glass" for a little public blood letting, it is time to drive around the zip code a while, regardless of the cost of gas.

but at the end of the day, it isn't enough.
how many outcome certainties incorrectly preordained can one endure?
how many idiotic nielsen rating predictions of obscure sporting events (in national and local markets i might add) can one listen to?
how many before one gets it—mike and the mad dog are mere sports fan mortals, no more no less than the guy with a jack hammer or the gal in a police uniform.

and they are entertainers, until they get stale.
and stale they have become.
they're doin' the right thing.

best of luck guys, and thanks again for some great radio.

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