Category Archives: Annie Corrigan

Hot Air

Winter’s Winning

Okay, things are getting weird now. WFIU’s Annie Corrigan told me this morning that the temp was -11º. So when I went outside to let Steve and Sally the Dogs out, I figured I’d freeze my delicate Fred Flintstone toes off.

Didn’t happen.

In fact, the air outdoors didn’t feel all that cold. It felt more like 11 degrees above zero.

Aha, I thought, Annie’s reading the temp wrong. Or something. Admittedly, 11 degrees above is not the condition under which you’d start thinking bikinis and fishing poles. But it is a 22-degree shift which, at any temp, is significant. I dashed back in to check the NOAA’s National Weather Service website. Lo and behold, the feds said we were sitting at -12º, a precious degree colder than Annie said.

What’s happening? Am I — shudder — starting to knuckle under to winter?

Antarctica

Ahead?

It’s depressing I tell you. Well, even more depressing than I’ve been thanks to this winter that began, um — when was it, back in September?

The Loved One snapped at me the other day in response to yet another of my ranting diatribes regarding this second yucky winter in a row. “Just get used to it!” she said.

Can it be? Am I getting used to it? Pardon me while I cry.

Humans Write

You and I both know this thriving, throbbing megalopolis is chock-full of writing talent. Do you need proof? Then hie down to Boxcar Books, Sunday for the Writers Guild at Bloomington‘s monthly First Sunday reading.

This month’s featured scribes include Amy Cornell, Antonia Matthew, and Gabriel Peoples.

  • Amy Cornell is one of the many good local souls involved in helping Monroe County Corrections Center inmates read and write. She leads writing circles there. Her work includes poetry, creative non-fiction, novels, blog posts, book reviews, and short stories.
  • Antonia Matthew has led the writing group Five Women Poets for years. She’s written, among other things, about her mother’s experiences with Alzheimer’s and her own time as a child in World War II England.
  • Born in Detroit, Gabriel Peoples lives in both Bloomington and College Park, Maryland, where she’s working toward her PhD in American Studies at the University of Maryland. She’s focused her studies on Black Performance Studies & Visual Culture.

Sounds like a compelling, varied line-up, no? Go there and support these writers.

Writer

Other than giving her a fat paycheck, the greatest thing you can do for a writer is listen to her read her stuff. Boxcar is at 408 E. 6th St. The readings begin at 3pm and run through 5pm.

The Mind Of A Leader

So, Rahm Emanuel goes before the voters of my beloved hometown Chicago today seeking a second stint as the object of hundreds of thousands of people’s rage, disappointment, and contempt.

Why anyone would want to be a president, a state governor, or the mayor of a city is beyond me. Some suggest such ambitious folks are, well, sort of off in the head. Several psychological observers have even advanced the notion that presidents and prime ministers are more sociopathic than not.

Makes sense, doesn’t it? What kind of person says, “Yeah, I want to be the most powerful human being on the planet, possessing the full capability to incinerate hundreds of millions — nay, billions — of my fellow human beings with the press of a button.”

Honestly, when The Loved One says it’s my turn to let the dogs out, I feel crushed and oppressed by the responsibility. “Do I hafta?” I whine.

Mayors must juggle the wants and demands of a seemingly endless parade of satisfaction seekers. And to do this, those mayors must slice up an ever-shrinking pile of dough. No matter what Rahm Emanuel or Bill De Blasio chooses to do, he’s going to make a lot of people mad. Not just mad as in angry; mad as in, well, mad.

Rage

A quartet of men want to be Bloomington’s next mayor. Two of them have an honest chance. By a couple of years after the election, the victor will be both the most hated and loved man in this city of some 75,000. For my money, Darryl Neher and John Hamilton are capable, nice, good guys. But, let’s be frank, they’ve both got to be crazy to want the job.

Let’s hope the next mayor’s skull doesn’t explode when, at some point in 2016, his wife says it’s his turn to let the dogs out.

Summer Soft

No, no! I won’t let winter win!

Hot Air

Sterling Trey-dux

Talk about mixed emotions. My immediate reaction to the NBA’s lifetime exile of Donald Sterling was one of elation.

Yesterday, league commissioner Adam Silver symbolically drew his forefinger across his throat and thus the fate of the racist, reptilian owner of the LA Clippers was sealed. Goodbye, Donnie boy. Don’t let the door hit you on the ass on your way out.

Silver/Sterling

Silver To Sterling: Beat It

Then again, Sterling — although a loathsome warthog — was done in by being secretly tape recorded in his own home (apparently). If so, we’ve got official sanctions coming down now due to the growing culture of surveillance and for the crime of thought. I don’t like any of that one bit.

And, in the end, isn’t that life? Nothing is pure and we take what we can get even if it stinks to high heaven.

Better Than NPR

Hah! We beat the pants and skirts off the national news gang at NPR.

Yep, only this morning did NPR discover Thomas Piketty. The Pencil, in case you didn’t know, told you about the French economist and latest rage in the bookselling world, Friday.

Hmm. I wonder if NPR reporters and producers are regularly scanning The Pencil for leads. If not, they ought to.

Anyway, I insist WFIU’s Will Murphy and Annie Corrigan begin using the following tagline each morning:

The news every morning on Bloomington’s NPR station, WFIU. Second only to The Electron Pencil.

It’s only fair, no?

Murphy

Murphy: Golly, I wish I Could Work For The Pencil

Real Death Sentences

We haven’t talked much about capital punishment in recent years. There’ve been far more important issues like Miley Cyrus’s tongue, Barack Obama’s birth certificate, death panels, guns, gays and, natch, god.

But the State of Oklahoma whacked a guy last night. The job was far sloppier than any performed by the dedicated professionals of the Chicago Outfit over the years. Using a new “cocktail” of dope, OK executioners attempted to send one Clayton Lockett to what they considered his just deserts. Rather than play his part according to script, Lockett instead twitched and spasmed and agonized for some three quarters of an hour before, behind a closed curtain, prison officials dispatched him properly.

Lockett, of course, was dark-skinned; as you know, white people rarely commit capital crimes. His icing was so botched that Oklahoma authorities decided to deny themselves the pleasure of another execution, scheduled for this afternoon, to make sure they can do it without forcing innocents to watch a man die while flailing about.

We can’t have that.

Weird, isn’t it? Just 20 years or so ago, capital punishment was one of the biggest controversies in this holy land. Now? Hell, we kill guys so routinely that executions only make news when the job is pooched.

Just a little info about the Guv of the great state o’Oklahama. As you know, it’s the governor who’s the final arbiter in the process of any state-sanctioned offing. Yesterday, it was Mary Fallin, the Republican boss of the state, who gave the thumbs down. Republicans traditionally have been gung ho for cap. pun. while Dems most often call for all criminals to be allowed to freely rape and murder your daughters.

At least that’s the way I read many GOP arguments for the ultimate time-out.

Fallin

Fallin

Fallin is a real piece of work, even more remarkable than, say, Sarah Palin. While Palin generally talks as though she’s under the combined influence of PCP and psychosis, at least she quit her job as Alaska governor years ago. Fallin, meanwhile, still steers the ship of OK.

Gov. F. just this month signed into law a bill she championed, banning OK cities from instituting minimum wage standards higher than the federal gov’t’s. See, she doesn’t want her state’s cities to get all liberal like Barack Osama Stalin Obama. And, besides, minimum wage earners, in her fairy tale world, don’t need raises.

Wait, as they say on TV, there’s more.  Late last year, Fallin issued an order cutting off all spousal benefits for National Guard members, lest those who are gay might insist their sexually sick and criminal partners get same.

Neat, huh?

Happy killing, Mary.

Your Daily Hot Air

Hey kids, just a few quick hits today because I’m in a hurry.

Union Now!

How cool is it that fast food workers in selected cities are going out on a series of one-day strikes this week?

The Big Mike answer and Official Pencil Policy Statement? Very cool.

Chase Guttman photo

NYC McDonald’s Workers On Strike Yesterday

Ever since Saint Ronald Reagan institutionalized this holy land’s policy of crushing labor unions by decertifying PATCO back in 1981, the labor movement has slid inexorably nearer to irrelevance. Dig: by general acclamation, the single most powerful workers group in the United States is the Major League Baseball Players Association. That is, a group of workers whose entry-level annual base pay is for the 2013 season is $490,000. That comes out to cool $30,625 per two-week pay period for the newest, rawest, and, perhaps, least productive worker in the business. Try to find a currency exchange that’ll cash that check.

But the MLBPA has consistently beaten the major league baseball owners at the bargaining table for the last 40 years. Baseball is the only major pro sports operation that doesn’t have a hard salary cap and big league ballplayers are entitled to the most liberal free agency system in all sports. Oh, and all contracts are guaranteed, meaning if a player is cut by a team, the team still owes him all the money due through the end on his contract. Pretty sweet, eh?

Of course, most things are pretty sweet for the 1% in this great nation.

Baseball & Money

Pretty Sweet

Then there’s the poor slob who’s pouring your cup of McDonald’s coffee, maybe even as we speak. He earns minimum wage. Which, as any kindergartner can calculate, is not enough to support a family of one, much less two, three, or more.

The big cheeses at Mickey Ds, Burger King, Wendy’s, and all those other salt-and-fat emporia are wringing their hands and dabbing at their eyes with their Kleenexes [boxes of which they purchased at drug-and-convenience stores that also pay their “valued associates” that same princely minimum wage], trying to convey to us through their subs that their businesses will crumble if they have to pay out a penny more in wages.

Bullshit.

I for one would be more than happy to pay a dollar extra per Big Mac just so’s the single mom flipping the horsemeat over a hot griddle can buy her kid[s] some shoes.

And if you wouldn’t, let me be the first to inform you that you are a jerk.

The Pipes, The Pipes Are Calling

This needs to be said and I’ll be the first: Annie Corrigan of WFIU carries the best set of pipes in all of Indiana broadcasting.

Bernard Gordillo Brockmann photo

The Voice Of Bloomington

She is the consummate professional and her joyous, dulcet lilt wakes me in the morning like the call of the cardinal.

My only fear is she’ll soon follow the scent of real b-casting money to a larger market, a reward of which she’s more than deserving. Oh, Annie girl…!

Not So Fast

Pope Frankie made a big splash yesterday by holding an impromptu press conference on the airplane as his entourage high-tailed it out of Brazil.

Sinatra/Pope

Idols

Among other things, the new Vatican princeps said he wasn’t about to judge anyone for being a homosexual and that women ought to play a larger role within the Church.

Now, before we all start throwing huzzahs around, let’s remember it is still the policy of the of the Roman Catholic executive committee that homosexual acts are sins and women shall never be priests.

Here’s my Latin response to the putative groundbreaking pronouncements by the Pontiff: Facta, non verba.*

[* In English, Actions, not words.]

America Grows Up

Back to coolness. How cool is it that John Kerry is the 68th Secretary of State of the United States of America?

Kerry/VVAW

Kerry, The Antiwar Protester

Honestly! Kerry was one of the faces of the anti-war movement back when this nation was debasing itself and committing crimes against humanity in Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia in the 1960s and ’70s. In April, 1971, Kerry testified before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee about the atrocities and general wrongheadedness of our excellent adventure in Southeast Asia. Later, he and other vets marched to the US Capitol and threw their service decorations at the place. At the time, Kerry said, “I’m not doing this for any violent reasons, but for peace and justice, and to try and make this country wake up once and for all.”

President Nixon and his gang of gasbags would have thrown a party had Kerry, then one of the leaders of Vietnam Veterans against the War, been run over by a bus. It’s a shocker that one of the rat-fuckers didn’t get that bright idea and try to recruit a down-on-his-luck bus driver to carry out the contract.

And now, Kerry is in charge of US foreign policy. We’ve still got a lot to be ashamed of and apologetic for in America, but we’ve come a long way, baby.

[BTW: Speaking of cool once again, imagine that a national talk show would have a civilized, rational, intellectual debate between representatives of opposing sides of a hot-button issue. The Dick Cavett Show was analogous to, say, today’s Conan or Late Night with Jimmy Fallon. I don’t want to slip into that old Things-were-better-in-my-day routine but, jeez, at least some of TV acknowledged that the average American had an organ in her or his skull.]

The Pencil Today:

THE QUOTE

“I don’t want to see the Republican Party ride to victory on the Four Horsemen of Calumny — Fear, Ignorance, Bigotry, and Smear.” — Margaret Chase Smith

NEW POSTING SCHEDULE

We’re posting twice a day now. The first, at 7:30am, Eastern, will be our our GO! event listings. The second is Your Morning Hot Air.

GO! Has Its Own Daily Post Now

Expect YMHA to appear anytime between 9am and 1pm.

The Electron Pencil, the best damned Bloomington website in the history of the interwebs!

ANNIE AND BLOOMINGTON’S BIG WHEELS

Bloomington’s favorite voice (and one of the town’s favorite people, period) Annie Corrigan sat down with Bleeding Heartland Rollergirls‘ skaters Bombshell Shock, Terror D’Bits, and the fabulous Kaka Kaliente for an interview on WFIU radio this weekend.

Listen to the interview online while you wait for BHRG’s next home bout.

WFIU’s Annie Corrigan

BTW: the civilian names of the above-mentioned skaters are, respectively, Casey McGrath, Raina Palivka, and, of course, Tyler Ferguson.

Tyler’s a long-time friend of the Pencil. We had a scare when the BHRG A-team, the Flatliners, took on the brutes from Milwaukee known as the Brewcity Bruisers a couple of weeks ago. Tyler was nearly flattened on several occasions during the bout.

And since she’s not a cartoon character, it’s doubtful her mates would have been able to pick up the cardboard-thin Tyler (No. 17 in the photo) and shaken her out to normal dimensions.

Yeesh!

GETTING A LEG UP ON THE OPPOSITION

So, Bob Kerrey is running for US senator from Nebraska once again.

Kerrey served as that state’s US senator from 1989 through 2001. Before that, he served a term as Nebraska governor. In fact, while running the state’s affairs, Kerrey engaged in a torrid one with actress Debra Winger, who happened to be in Nebraska filming scenes for the movie, “Terms of Endearment.”

Affair Of State

The two lived together for a time in the governor’s mansion, causing reporters to bay like hounds. Early on in the affair, Kerrey responded to a question about the nature of his relationship with Winger. “What can I say? She swept me off my foot.”

Look closely at the quote and note his intentional use of the singular form, foot.

See, as a lieutenant (junior grade) in the US Navy and a SEAL team member, Kerrey had participated in a firefight on an island in the Bay of Nha Trang. Hoping to surprise a Viet Cong encampment, he led a couple of SEAL teams in scaling a sheer cliff and descending upon the enemy from its heights. As the teams came under intense fire, Kerrey was thrown backward by a grenade explosion.

He was bleeding profusely and barely clinging to consciousness but still maintained control over his team and communicating with other SEAL team. The SEAL teams eventually ousted the Viet Cong encampment and Kerrey, his leg shattered, continued to direct their mop-up operations. Kerrey was evacuated by helicopter after the fighting stopped.

Kerrey was brought into surgery and awoke to find that much of his right leg had been amputated.

Ergo, “foot.”

Bob Kerrey was awarded the Medal of Honor, the Bronze Star, and the Purple Heart.

Bob Kerrey Receives The Medal Of Honor

Sort of an odd coincidence, no? Kerrey’s homophonic fellow Democrat John Kerry also was injured in Vietnam and won multiple valor awards for his service. Kerry copped the Silver Star, the Bronze Star, and three Purple Hearts.

You may recall that professional madman Jerome Corsi and the Swiftboat Veterans for Truth staged a notoriously mean-spirited campaign as Kerry ran for president in 2004, claiming the Dem candidate had not been injured at all in Vietnam and had lied about his actions to earn his medals.

I wonder if they’re gearing up to go after Bob Kerrey now.

Perhaps they’ll charge that Kerrey hired socialist doctors to saw his leg off back in 1969, the first step in a long, elaborate plot to infiltrate the US Senate in 2013.

We’ll keep watching for word from the lunatic asylum.

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