Here’s Lurking Right Back at You

I like all the likes,
Witty saying, mentioned by name;
Blog post, and podcast.

Glimpse behind the scenes;
Arkansas back woodsy folks;
A shared article.

A timeless game show.
Crazy folks from up the block;
I like your likes back.

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Radio Entertainment: Preservation for Future Generations

Or: The Out of Control Thought of Losing It

There’s nothing like the unsettling feeling to realize that nothing was like it was just a moment ago. Out of control, shock, stunned, the confidence of having, then in a moment that hollow, empty feeling.

Once the conscious thought to force the air to begin moving through your lungs returns, the sensation of insides that feel like they’ve just started melting is accompanied by that feeling of heat creeping up your neck. Or like a rubber band around your scalp that’s slowly inching it’s way up in fractions, making the hair own your head feel like it’s doing the wave as it slowly stands on end.

When asked if he was ever lost, the great woodsman Daniel Boone had this to say, “Nope, I can’t say I’ve ever been lost. But I’ve been mighty confused for a few days.”

Now, I suppose that nothing is ever truly lost. Everything has to be somewhere. It never exactly disappears. But sometimes the practical use, or life of a thing is gone. A loved one who has passed away. A toy that has become broken. Missing a turn In the road, and being somewhere unexpected. The physical thing we say is lost, is still there, but the parts no longer work, and the intangible function robs the usefulness of it. The life force, the soul, has departed from the cement that binds it to the human frame, and we lose the interaction with that person, and we grieve the loss. In the case of Daniel Boone, we may lose track of our position on the planet, but we’re still somewhere. Just not where we expected.

Some things can’t be recovered. How can a person recall a soul that has departed? The body remains, but a cycle of life begins that calls it to return to the earth. All we have, if that loved one was lucky, or had the fore thought, is the static images we might find in a photo album. Maybe movies of them are left behind, or possibly audio recordings of somme kind. Slices of time. Moments, mannerisms, voices, capturing them being perpetually young, or at a place along their life journey. It’s not them physically. It’s not a soul who we can interact with, or relate to, other than in memories and imagination.

The physical, tangible form is changing, returning to the earth. Physical objects hold recordings, or might be machines to function in countless ways. Broken? Lost functions can be restored. Take a part out. Replace it with a new one, and lost uses are restored. A simulation of a soul returns. A life that’s not a life, but draws out an imagination that rebuilds it in the mind. The machine lives on as indefinitely as the source of fresh parts holds out.

The inanimate illusion lives on until… a mind concocts a better, more effective, efficient machine. One with better functions. More functionality. Better precision. Then the old one isn’t lost. It gets cast aside. Yesterday’s shine and new, becoming today’s rusty and old. Not lost, but resigned to return to earth in its own life cycle to make way for tomorrow’s invention. A new generation of objects to amuse, or assist humanity in the ongoing, unending task of discovery.

Is there anything lost? In a moment anything can be lost. Everything eventually comes to an end, and usefulness is lost. People can live on as long as their ideas and memories are kept fresh, and shared. It’s not the person themselves, just their contribution to the universe. Some small, others far reaching, but all interesting and important in their own way.

Behind the Scenes: Committed to the Show Notes

Or: The Sausage Grinder of Show Notes
Or: Today’s Brain Dump, Getting Distracted by My Background Mood Music

Trying to stay committed to writing to the blog, getting some writing done for ongoing show notes, and keeping up on outside projects. Well, they’re outside as far as the activities of the Retro Radio Podcast are concerned. First of all, let’s cue up some tunes to set the mood and play in the background. Ah, here we go, my Marian Hutton collection. What a nice voice, and a cute blonde. Getting immersed in recordings from the era, it’s easy to forget these stars are long gone. well, I was actually around during the time she was still alive. She just wasn’t performing much in the years I have memories of.

In her later years, Marian Hutton became a rehab counselor, helping others with alcohol problems, but once in a while still sane on occasion with the old band. Tex Beneke had taken over to lead the Glenn Miller band, complete with the Modernaires.

She could sing songs from novelty kiddie songs like, Mutiny in the Nursery, to fun boogie songs, to ballads, and in her later career, Who Stole The Jam. A song that a mom might sing to find out which of her kids ate up all the jam. Nothing left but the empty jar, and a trail of bread crumbs. If she finds out, she’ll kick your teeth in… huh? I have to laugh. Isn’t that just the kind of thing a loving mom might say to her kids? Of course, as an empty threat, but one that conveys mom’s frustration.

I wonder what kind of mom she was. I’m sure she had her troubles with success and substance abuse, but she didn’t seem as volatile as her little sister, Betty.

Wow, I’m getting too side tracked, listening to the tunes, and not getting show notes written. Here we go. This is how I do it.

Play the show, and listen for names, places, and what’s happening. Why names? They’re just fictional, right? It’s easier to refer to the people in the show by name than saying: That one guy shot the lady in the red coat. Then the second guy got into a fight with the bartender, and the first guy ran out before the other one could get him.

See? Confusing, boring, and too many pronouns to keep straight. Writing the names as I hear them, plus place names almost write the notes by themselves. Jotting down some connecting details like what Sam did at the waterfront ties it all up pretty neatly. I try not to add dialog, unless a particular quote stands out, or a figure of speech adds some color to the notes. My big goal is to summarize the action, not transcribe it.

If people are familiar with the show, maybe just the title is enough. If not, a summary might entice a reader to click the button to play the show.

I listen to the episode just one time through, taking notes as it plays. I avoid rewinding, or listening to it again. If the notes need cleared up, other than grammar or spelling, I might skim through to a particular spot to get a name right, or a song title.

Then it’s off to the next show. So it takes me however long the show is, more or less, to do each one. I can knock out a solid four hours when I’m on a roll, maybe as long as five or six. By then a either a stomach is empty, or a bladder is full, and its time to call it quits.

I got sidetracked again. Gotta laugh. My music played to a v-disk that also featured Dinah shore singing Betty Huttons hit. Murder he says. She just can’t do it justice. A nice, sweet, evenly modulated version, but not like bettye stylized way of screaming it out.

OK, back to writing show notes. Where do I go from here. After writing down as many shows as I can I give my fingers a rest. I often binge on a single show, like lining up all the Jack Benny episodes for the month, or more, and knocking them all out at once. Other times, I just go down the big file of stuff for the month. I use various index marks to let me find which shows still need notes, which are done and in need of posting, and a mark to let me know which ones are done.

Along the way, I make sure the files are uploaded, and grab the ftp links for the shows. By that, I mean I copy them from my ftp client, and when I paste them in, the text for the ftp path is inserted. At that point, I need to change the ftp link to http so the links work right.

Yeah, boring tech stuff, but who ever said podcasting was all thrills and chills?

Now my listings are all set to copy and paste them into the dashboard when the time comes. I just don’t worry about the tags until time to post. I decide on the fly what to put down, after the writing process has cooled down. What else do I do? What else? Oh yeah, I give a final proof read when I actually post stuff, so my archives of each month’s shows are pretty messy. Usually the first, or second draft.

Thats about all there is to writing show notes. I try to use ass many literary techniques as I can to make them interesting.

Oops, had to stop for a second to restart iTunes. I don’t know why it stopped, I must have hit a hot key by accident as my fingers of fury knocked out all this junk.

Well, there’s really nothing more to add. A lot of listening, jotting down notes, using character names, and always pushing to see how much I can get done today. Working ahead buys me time to take time off when I need it, or to run those unexpected errands.

The Places of crime

Or: Dragnet 50-10-05 ep69, Big 38.

Robbery Detail. A burglar with a gun is described as being well dressed. Your job, find him. The air is hot on the night shift.
Footsteps echo in the cathedral, as organ music plays. Cops have come to find the choir loft, and bring somber news to match the tone of the music in the air. Joe Friday reports a death. In voiceover, he states that armed robbers always prove to be killers. The crime scene, a cash register, and a clerk in Disbelief. One moment life, and in the moment of a gunshot, death. The shooter is described. Thin, tall, blonde, nervous, twitching, and in a grreatcoat. The questions causer the crime to be relived. Emotions of surprise, cooperation. A gunshot. anger, and a get away in a cab, riding in the front seat.

Silent and cool, technology in the Police lab is applied. Ballistics, fingerprints, and results are tentative. Footsteps echo down the hall. More briefing. The common elements in the case review: Cabs, and 38 calibre slugs. What’s the word from the Crime lab. No luck, no matches.

On the Night watch routine the crime is unending.
Another store, connections to cabs. But with a Different 38. Checking with cab companies, for drivers with matching builds. Tall, and slim. Another crime scene that match the method of operation. Armed with a photo line up. A Face after face in pages of an album, crime personified and ugly. A match is made.

Clues lead to aAn apartment,, and an accomplice is found. Have a seat, calm your nerves, have a beer. Questions hit hard, and the search heats up. The trail leads to a neighborhood, with nice houses, beauty shops, and trees. Cornered and shielded by timid mother and crying baby, gunshots and fists land to end the crime spree.

Only one place remaibs to close the case. A Trial, and finally, the Gas chamber.

Download and listen now.

Behind the Scenes: Where the Podcasting Rubber Meets the Road

Or: Consciously Streaming a Rant

What’s on my plate today? First, let’s check my ongoing monthly line up, Search for the index mark for shows I need to write notes on today.

Wow, so far, so good. The rest of the month is written up, except for any stray Retro Original shows I decide to post. Those are done separately anyway. But I still need to check on shows I want to feature… a job for later. I don’t have time for it now.

Back to the monthly file. Search for my index mark of shows that need proofread, and posted. Uh-oh, good thing I checked. I gotta get a few out before tonight, or the podcast feed will come to a crashing halt in the morning. No problem. Here we go.

Fixing typos, fixing clunky wording, but it’s mostly OK. Fortunately, I already have the media links pasted into the notes, so away we go.

  • Open my WordPress dashboard. Getting logged in, of course.
  • Copy and paste the note from the file to the dashboard.
  • Put the title in the right place.
  • Put the body text in the right spot.
    • Oops, missed a typo or two.
    • Add line breaks for paragraphs.
  • Tick the category boxes.
    • One for the channel.
    • One for the show.
  • Drop in the tags.
    • The year.
    • The show title,
    • Pick keywords or themes from the show, based on the note.
    • Don’t overdo it.
  • Paste in the media link.
  • Give it a quick test to be sure the file is good. No errors.

Almost done.

This one is for tomorrow, so change the date to tomorrow. Let’s see, it aired in 1942, so set the time to 2 AM. Bump the minutes to 20-something. Hit Publish.

O wait. “Why did you do that?” You ask. I use the second digit in the year to post the hour from 1AM to 10AM, with a few exceptions, like when more than one show might end with the same digit. I may alter the hour when that happens. “And the minutes, why specifically 20-something?” I can hear you ask. The era of radio shows that exist range from the 1930’s to the 1950’s. I divided the hour into three parts. One for each decade. “Then why not use the full third of an hour” I hear you ask. Some shows lingered, or were broadcast later. I’m a little more loose in the hour and minutes for those decades, but I fudge them in there to keep things spaced out a little.

Here comes the tedious part. It took just under ten minutes to do the copy, paste, link test, and date the shows. Wash, rince, repeat. If I can keep from being interrupted, I might be able to crunch out most of the rest of the month. Yeah, like that’ll happen. Likely, my browser will start bogging down, and take forever to load pages.

I wonder how to clear the cache. o I’m sure it needs, if I can’t remember how long it’s been, or how to do it. I’ll have to Google it… sometime later. Not right now.

For now it’s a matter of repeating all the above steps for the next few shows to see how far I can get. At least try to get stuff posted up to sometime next week. Yeah, that should do it to give me some cushion to work on other projects. t

Oh. You know what I forgot? I really need to start collecting stock images to insert in the posts. For now, i’ll grab my javascript form to insert an Amazon ad. Oh well, i’ll skip this one I’ve already got done, and do it for the ones coming up. No need to do every show. I already have ads on the Welcome page, and in the side bar, so it’s not like people don’t see them. They just don’t click and buy stuff. Oh well, maybe one of these days.

Well, there you have it. A typical, boring day of data processing, typing, and getting shows posted. It’s not the glamorous, glorious life, filled with exotic Retrobots like you thought it was… ain’t it.

But there’s more.
This has just been where the rubber hits the road in transferring raw notes into a finished post.

Keith Heltsley

The Colorful Days of Blowing Cigar Smoke

Here I sit, thinking it’s high time to challenge myself to write again,. Not that  I don’t write something, in some way, nearly every day. Sometimes enough to overflow to a few days running.

Third Lt Stanley is a baboon. Vic.

Before I stretch my imagination, I took time to browse my folder of junk where I’ve written things that never quite got posted. The colorful world of Paul Rhimer, and the good folks halfway up the next block came to mind.

Well here, you never heard such junk. Sade.

I found a few quotes I jotted down that seemed familiar. They’re from an episode where the very young principal of the high school wants to appear more mature to his supervisors in the school board.

Ish Russel, a person’s trying’ to say something. Sade.

When the actors changed for a while during World War 2, the script got a slight re-write, and was performed again.

He scratches a match and blows out a couple bushels of smoke. Russel.

Here’s some absurd quotations from the good old days… you know… back when smoking was just one of those things, and not a social stigma, or even bad

for your health.

O ish. Sade.

On top of that, enjoy the colorful colloquialisms of small town midwestern 1940’s lingo. Having relatives from this era, and location, I can vouch to you, people really did talk like this, and use this kind of mannerisms in their speech.

Maybe I’ll establish a cigar smoking college. Charge everybody forty dollars a semester. Vic.

And now get ready to smile again with America’s home folks, Vic and Sade.

  • Whip out big black cigars, and smoke away like a steam engine. Russel.
  • I wouldn’t be the least bit surprised Dr Sleach. Vic.
  • O such silliness. Sade.
  • He whips out a stogie as long as a baseball bat. Russel.

Listen to even more absurdities:  
Vic and Sade – Mr Chinbunny Wants To Smoke Cigars, Russell. 440602.

Compare it to the happenings where you’ll hear such things as:

  • I’ll bet 99 dollars the telephone rings in the next 10 minutes, Rush.
  • Puffing in bushels of smoke, and blowing it out like a furnace. Rush.
  • His idea is to whip out big black cigars, and smoke away like a steam engine, Rush.
  • He better take it easy the first 19 or 20 cigars, otherwise he’ll run the risk of getting sick. Rush.
  • Just sitting here with our teeth in our mouth. Vic.
  • you and your big ox of a husband. Vic
  • This is really on the level huh? Vic.
  • He whips out a stogie as big as your leg. Rush.

Don’t believe it? Listen to the whole show here:
Vic and Sade – Mr Chinbunny Wants To Smoke Cigars (Rush). 400602