"God Bless the Dream, the Dreamer and the Result." 

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Stop Feeding My Pets!

Written by Bob Rehak
Edited by: Sharon Estill
Joboja Staff Writers

Everyone has at least a few pets living with him or her, even if they don't actually own a cat, dog, gerbil, hamster, rabbit or fish. (Reptiles do not count as real pets. The rule of thumb is this: if it can use its tongue to poison you, its tail to whip you, or its entire body to squeeze the life out of you, it really shouldn't be left out of its cage. That's not a pet—that's a threatening menace).

Back to my thesis: we all have more than one pet. I have at least 32 as of today. You probably have less if you're younger than me, maybe more if you're older. They're your pet peeves. We all have them. We collect them throughout our lives. We can sit in a chair and stroke them like one of the players on the World Poker Tour fondling a stack of chips that equal twice your annual salary. Pet peeves are the annoyances that are like the flies swarming constantly around the business end of a cow in late August. We keep swatting them away, but they just keep coming back.

Two of the peeves in my crass menagerie involve the media.

I listen to sports radio in my car on the way home from work. It's in my guy DNA to do it, and in the handbook they gave me at the hospital when I was born. Page 23, Rule 18, line 67: "All men must listen to sports talk when alone in the car. If two or more men are in the car, 21% of radio listening must be allocated to sports talk radio. If the occupants are en route to a sporting event, ONLY sports radio is allowed during the entire trip, and the topic must be pregame comments on the way to the game and postgame comments on the way home."

My pet peeve with all sports talk radio shows is with the last 3 minutes. Why in the name of Marconi do they insist on thanking every person who called into the show, faxed into the show, emailed into the show and came into work on the show for the past four hours? This verbal rolling of the credits every day at the end of every show serves no purpose. It has no nutritional value. We get it: people talked for the past 4 hours and people helped produce the talk for the past 4 hours. It's ridiculous.
What if everyone did the same thing at the end of the day at their jobs before they left the office? "Good night everyone, see you tomorrow. But before I head to the parking lot, I'd like to thank all the clients who called in, faxed in, everyone who emailed, everyone who bought our products, all the vendors who sold us a product and everyone who I came into contact with during the last 8 hours. Thanks in particular to Joe, for finding those paperclips when I ran out. Thanks, Shirley, for taking those messages for me earlier in the day. God willing, I'll see you all here again tomorrow morning. Good night!"

Television, it appears, has learned not to let the credits drag on and on. These days the credits go by faster than you can read them. That's the good news. The bad news is that now there's more time for commercials. But I can live with that, because I understand that advertisers pay for the quality programming I am receiving, unless it's on PBS. What I can't take, what itches at my gray matter like attic insulation on an open sore, are the pop-up ads for upcoming programs contained within the TV show you're watching at the moment.

It's a practice that started out innocently enough, when networks started to place semi-transparent logos in the corner of the screen. At first they were these 1 inch holograms that made you blink twice because you weren't sure if they were really there or not. Then the networks started to push the envelope little by little, and eventually those logos got so big that at times they looked like your TV was made by ABC instead of JVC.

Now the networks have torn that envelope wide open. I'll be watching "The Office", and the NBC logo will convulse and morph into one of the actors from "ER", who will start walking toward me, silently, turn sideways, smile and fold his arms, as a scrolling message announces that a very special "ER" is all NEW and next on NBC. Thanks for the heads up, but could you please get Dr. Pratt out of Michael Scott's nose? These ads within a show are peeving me off.

Those are just two of my pet peeves. And no, I don't feel any better for getting those off my chest; that's why they're called pet peeves. They don't go away easily. It usually takes a few years to rid yourself of a pet peeve. These pets have the life expectancy of a horse and are just as hard to bury. I've got 30 more to verbalize and exorcise, but that would take another 60 paragraphs. And I can't stand long winded bloggers. Hey, that's 33!


Anonymous said...

That's why they send horses to the glue factory instead of interring them...

Anonymous said...

I agree with the idea that we shouldn't have to listen to all the thanks at the end. Who cares who produced the show or who called in. We all assume the radio guys are doomed without those folks. Someone should send this article to Dan McNeil and the guys at WMYVP

Anonymous said...

what about people who LET safety and courtesy take a holiday? is that one of your pet peeves?

Anonymous said...

I can't stand those ads on TV either. Are they trying to tell you that they don't think the show you are watching is any good, but if you'll just bear with them, there's a better one coming up? It completely ruins a dramatic moment to have some goofy, sauntering, winking alien leprechaun plugging a completely different show invade the screen. I'm with you on this one!