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Maybe they'll still let JoPa go out with some dignity, but this mess goes pretty high up now. PSU's president Graham Spanier can either quit or get fired tonight:
Anyone fascinated by that last great era of heavyweight boxing really should see the terrific documentary "When We Were Kings." It's about Ali's 1974 matchup with Foreman in Zaire. Ali is Ali, of course, but Foreman is unrecognizable -- moody, brooding, unlikeable. Guess who the native crowd favors? It's also worth seeing because Don King's hair was only five inches high back then.
I would have said it's the other way around, but yes Commander Cody.
Here's a piece of little-known trivia. Does anyone know the name of one of the young ABC Radio executives who gave know-it-all lawyer Howard Cohen a shot at radio sportscasting in the mid-1950s? His name was Telly Savalas. Later on, he became an actor. You may remember him. So yes, you can blame Kojak for giving us Cosell.
I just heard an old NPR interview with Smokin' Joe. He seemed to have accepted his place in history with good humor, even if he never made a public campaign of it. Back in the day though, I'm sure Frazier wanted to use those piston-sized fists on Cosell more than a few times. After all, who didn't?
When I first started out as a trade magazine editor, the pay was awful -- unless you were willing to work for one of the tobacco industry trades! I never could bring myself to do it but others certainly did. Repman, it has been possible to bike through the Lincoln Tunnel in the past. For several years my bicycle club, the 5BBC ( was able to work with the Port Authority to shut down the Lincoln Tunnel on a Sunday morning in July to ride from Manhattan to NJ. We're trying again for 2012. If we're successful, I'll invite you to join us. Afterward, I'll treat you to a smoke and an artery-clogging breakfast at the Royal Cliffs diner.
I doubt it Repman; I respect wiccans too much to reduce them to sitcom fodder. But some characters' attributes would probably rhyme with witch.
Toggle Commented Oct 17, 2011 on It's the worst of times (for men) at RepMan
Think of it this way -- you can't make fun of women, gays or minorities anymore. On top of that,the decision-making power on sitcom production and airing is increasingly shared by men and women. Who else are they gonna pick on? And men are easy pickings. Enough of us conform to these idiotic stereotypes with metrosexual fashion/style rituals and trying to be friends with their kids by wearing the same clothes and playing with the same toys. A few years ago, a group of men and I formed a group to rise above this. While I can't repeat our name in a family blog, we did take our initial teachings from David Deida. He advocates that men and women form deep, open, and powerful connections with each other and let go of boundaries. Of course that's not the kind of stuff you can convey in a 23-minute sitcom and prompt laughs with. Nonetheless, I look forward to your attempt, Repman and will be glad to review the script before submission to the powers-that-be.
Toggle Commented Oct 15, 2011 on It's the worst of times (for men) at RepMan
It's an interesting question: should management reputation types hold the media to the fire for balanced reporting about nasty CEO types? Ideally, yes. Realistically, no, and see why at Let's face it, too many PR people are stuck in the unenviable position of spinning and defending that same lousy behavior. Meanwhile, the "media" as we've come to know it is understaffed, takes easy pickings and is often owned by corporate entities where fawning coverage for big business leaders are the only advertising equivalency formulas that have ever worked worth a damn. Like Jobs, the NY Times essentially gave Henry Ford a free pass: He was called "the father of mass production" and "the man who put the world on wheels" with just a brief mention of his many hateful screeds and failings as a human being.
Toggle Commented Oct 13, 2011 on Does genius trump abuse? at RepMan
I'm not surprised one bit. The guy's probably been pushing paper for so long he hasn't put together a WSJ story since 1985.
Toggle Commented Oct 12, 2011 on Big agency think at RepMan
I was up to 4 cups a day in my last agency incarnation. Glad to be back to one. Growing up in my hometown of Oceanside, Long Island, the Nassau County Police's 4th precinct outpost (a hut, really) was located two blocks from the donut shop. You were more likely to find the cruisers there than anywhere else. It became an embarrassing joke around the time the first "Police Squad: The Naked Gun" movie came out: After that, the commander started mandatory weigh-ins and fines for officers who were caught repeatedly donuting instead of patrolling.
It was good of you to keep the kid's anonymity, Repman. Everybody has a right to be young and stupid once. Now, whether he learns from it or not....
Toggle Commented Sep 30, 2011 on How NOT to secure a summer internship at RepMan
Repman, why is it that I don't really believe it when you write that you've washed your hands of the Mets? I keep thinking of Bogart's Rick Blaine in "Casablanca," telling Paul Henreid's Victor Laszlo that nothing's worth fighting for. Laszlo's response: "You know how you sound, Mr. Blaine? Like a man who's trying to convince himself of something he doesn't believe in his heart." I do admit to staying up too late watching movies lately, but I'm an expectant parent. Approximately 195 days until 2012 Opening Day.
Toggle Commented Sep 29, 2011 on Misery loves company at RepMan
I'll enjoy reading it a lot, but I hope you're prepared to keep that lawyer you have on retainer VERY busy. And just in case your agent doesn't get Random House or Simon & Shuster to bid, many clients I work with get great results with customized CreateSpace options.
Toggle Commented Sep 22, 2011 on Kiss-and-tell du jour at RepMan
Great post, but two corrections: - The Edsel was introduced on Sept. 4, 1957 as a 1958 model, not 1959. Ford announced the shutting down of its Edsel division in Dec. 1959, losing well over $500 million. - John Lindsay's middle name was Vliet, not Vachel. Is VD from a NYC mayor the best Florence Henderson could come up with? I'd have expected at least a one-nighter with Burt Reynolds or Clint Eastwood. Everyone else does. Seriously, Florence Henderson has been doing anything she can to sex up her image since "The Brady Bunch" was canceled 37 years ago. Unlike Betty White though, she just comes off as nauseating. I haven't seen or heard much of Dyan Cannon since the Seventies. On a train last month I read a celebrity autobio completely and purposely lacking sordid details: Dick Van Dyke's "My Fortunate Life." The only salacious details are that he was born 7 months after his parent's marriage (apparently a "love child" was scandalous in 1925 Danville, IL), he left his wife for Michelle "Palimony" Triola, and he's an alcoholic. Anyone who's occasionally followed the guy's life already knew the last two. For 60 years, Van Dyke has demonstrated huge talent and versatility, worked with very talented people, credited them for his success and gained a reputation for being a decent human being. He didn't need to tell trashy stories. Even with all those boring attributes, his book still reached the best-seller lists. May the reception to your upcoming tome, "Life with Mr. Ed" be so well-received.
Toggle Commented Sep 21, 2011 on Kiss-and-tell du jour at RepMan
With both an HR and PR background, I can tell you that you hit most but not all of the reasons these hiring decisions continue to made. Another factor is that one mediocrity begets another. If I were at liberty, I'd cite from personal experience at least a dozen examples where empty suits were preferred over very qualified mover-and-shaker candidates. It goes like this: very often, the agency holding company CEO, corporate CMO, etc. ultimately prefers to hire someone they're "comfortable" with rather than the candidate with a track record they secretly find intimidating. What that really means is that the top gun wants to hold on to his/her job. That's why they seek out someone without the talent or drive to replace them in 18-36 months, when lousy performance catches up with whole teams. Instead, the underling gets temporarily tossed on the trash heap, the boss holds on, provides a nice recommendation, and the cycle continues. This is nothing new -- I witnessed the same old boy's network at my first larger agency job.
Toggle Commented Sep 21, 2011 on PR's version of 'don't ask, don't tell' at RepMan
THanks for this. I read "Life" when it came out early in the year. Without a doubt this is the best celeb autobiography I've ever read -- brutally honest, funny and a lot more insightful than I ever expected. The jacket copy said something like "bet you're surprised I remember so much" and I was. - Whose outrageous stage act and patronizing treatment of his band mates inspired Mick to follow suit (which, in turn, caused the media to incorrectly nickname the group 'Mick & the Boys')? ANSWER: JAMES BROWN
Toggle Commented Sep 20, 2011 on (Keith can't get no) satisfaction at RepMan
I agree with ghost, it's really not such an awful gig. Winning isn't everything; there's also heritage and tradition. That's the same reason doing PR for the Red Sox before 2004 wasn't such a bad gig -- though admittedly they had much better teams than the Cubs over those nine decades. No, I'll paraphrase the great Western Indiana humorist Jean Shepherd, who said his "Old Man" was always happiest every spring, when all was right with the world with the renewed hope that THIS will be the Cubs' year. 70 years later, I think most Chicagoans still feel that way -- at least until the All-Star break!
Toggle Commented Sep 16, 2011 on I have some good news and some bad news at RepMan
Yikes! She sounds like the 2011 version of "Chainsaw Al" Dunlap or former Warnaco CEO Linda Wachner, once called "the toughest boss in America" and called "vile" by no less than Calvin Klein. The amateur shrink in me says Ms. Bartz's propensity to alienate and curse a blue streak hides deeper issues than proving she's got more balls than the boys. Of course we'll all learn the "real story" in her inevitable autobiography, possibly followed by a quixotic run to replace Boxer, Feinstein or Brown in California. Bartz certainly does know how to make an exit. My favorite is that her leaked email to Yahoo's 14,000 employees asked them to keep in touch with her via a gmail address! She wasn't so smart on the golden parachute, though. By going public with how she was fired by phone and calling the Yahoo board "doofuses," Bartz has apparently f---ked herself out of $10 million.
Toggle Commented Sep 9, 2011 on The Babe Ruth of the expletive deleted at RepMan
Having had to write those obnoxious "look at me, we just won XYX account" announcments for other firms, it's usually the moment the news hits that the client relationship hits its first rough patches. I've come to believe that sometimes, silence is golden.
Toggle Commented Sep 2, 2011 on The Wild Bill Hickok of PR Firms at RepMan
Nice post. I hope to see "Book of Mormon" at some point. Having worked with a few Mormons during a stint with their AOR, I agree they have a pretty good sense of humor. But you're really off base with the polygamy jokes -- those went out with Diamond Jim Brady and the Great Panic of 1893.
Toggle Commented Sep 2, 2011 on Tomorrow’s a latter-day at RepMan
I can't fault the media for giving out information. In that respect, they did their job. But they did go over the top in one way, and I know RepMan agrees with me: they're just plain bloodthirsty. You could tell from the tone of their reporting how upset some reporters and anchors were that the NY Metro area was spared from Armageddon. My wife and I worked in an evacuation center Saturday. Most of the people live in NYC housing projects (which shut down power and services), the homeless, and "Zone A" inhabitants who were forced out for two days. Was Irene wasn't over-hyped to them? I don't think so. Nor was it over-hyped to my friend in Long Beach who can breathe somewhat that the sandbags he put down only gave him a flooded basement while 12 houses nearby were practically destroyed. Nor was it over-hyped to the people of upstate towns in Delaware County like Andes and Margaretville, which are under water, or the farms in Vermont whose crops and livelihood were destroyed. As for the politicians, I'm not much for Christie's politics, but I like his blustery but no B.S. approach. Telling those Snooki & Situation types that they're tan enough already is classic. NYC Mayor Mike Bloomberg redeemed himself somewhat from last winter's blizzard debacle. Less noticeable was Andrew Cuomo's more understated approach; he was certainly out there, but chose to let the local politicos hog the cameras.
I'm OK with anything that cancels out the insidious Ronald McDonald. Please leave the Pillsbury Doughboy alone, though. I learned most of my slick moves from him; he had a reputation with the ladies for being good in bread.
Toggle Commented Aug 26, 2011 on The Pol Pot of supersized portions at RepMan
Of course it's legitimate that the media has to put a lot of coverage into Irene. It's of critical importance. But there's a line between news coverage and spreading hype and false fear. That line is being crossed. It's what RepMan is objecting to and I agree with him. The coverage of the earthquake in NYC was just one shameful example. I also think this kind of media coverage partially contributes to how the United States is turning from a self-determined nation into a bunch of thumb-sucking worriers, or "sheeple" as some like to call us. One final thing, Bubbles. New York has had PLENTY of experience with hurricanes. In my lifetime, there was Bob (1971) and Gloria (1985) which killed 11 people. It hit Brooklyn/Queens and Long Island's south shore (my homeland) very hard. But after surveying the damage, my mother said it was nothing compared to 1938's infamous Category 2 hurricane that killed 600 people along the Atlantic Coast, especially Long Island, Connecticut and Rhode Island. OK, that one's before our lifetimes but we've been through it.
Toggle Commented Aug 26, 2011 on We need a Fifth Estate at RepMan
Forget it, I hit "Post" too soon. I see it's a Photoshop-type composite of 42, 43, and 44.
Toggle Commented Aug 24, 2011 on The Browning Nagle of American Presidents at RepMan