Monday, September 29, 2008

A THING TO GET BUZZED TO

It was October 4, 1999. I was going to the W. Ross Macdonald School For The Blind at the time. I had my own little TV in my room because of course with a common TV someone always monopolizes it. I had come back from school and was doing what I always do at that time of year: monitoring the local TV stations to see what new programs they had. I had tuned to the Cbc. It was then that it came on: Degrassi Junior High.

Living in Canada, I had of course heard of Degrassi Junior High. I was too young to have watched it when it originally aired but I do remember seeing a rerun of the one where Wheel's parents died with my baby-sitter one day. I had never had much interest in it, though.

However, that day as I watched the first scene of the first episode with Arthur and Stephanie talking in the schoolyard, I realised I was never going to find anything as cheesy as this. I have laughed at it ever since. I recently purchased the Dvds. Now my sister and I watch them Saturday nights when we drink.

MADE IN THE 80'S IS GONE

The radio show Made In The 80's, produced and hosted by Mark Filbain, program director of local radio station Classic Hits 95.5, is off the air. The program had been syndicated on a couple of other radio stations, and was distributed by Skywards.

I had a feeling deep down that the program couldn't last. Classic Hits isn't known for playing a wide selection of music, and the 80's, unlike most decades only had ten years.

In its place is Supergroup Saturday with the same host. It features really popular groups like The Doors etc.

How long is this going to last?

IF IT AIN'T BROKE, BREAK IT

Today, Cbc Radio One debued its new schedule changes. Q is now on at 10:00 a.m. The 2:00 slot is now filled by a new show called The Point.

What was wrong with there old schedule? It was perfect. They started the day off with The Current, giving perspective to hard news and issues. Next came Sounds Like Canada, great for stay-at-home moms with it's soft news and features. The 2:00 slot was perfect for Q because that was when a lot of college kids, who would be into the kinds of things talked about on the show would be listening to the radio.

I don't imagine a lot of stay-at-home moms are going to want to listen to endless discussions about cuts to arts funding and in-studio sessions with rock bands. As far as The Point, it just seems like The Current for the hipsters Q was trying to go after.

CKWS AND CHEX'S NEW SCHEDULE

Around this time of year, I like to monitor the TV stations to see what schedule changes have taken place. Lately I have been monitoring Ckws Kingston and Chex Peterborough.

The schedule is the same as last season in many ways, but with a couple noticeable changes. The programming on both stations is pretty much the same except for local news.

Instead of The Price Is Right at 11:00, both stations now have The People's Court. This is a good change. You can already see The Price Is Right on many other channels, whereas People's Court is not as readily available in Canada.

At 4:00, both stations now have reruns of Becker and Scrubs. Personally, this is better than the home makeover show they used to have on at this time.

During the 7:00 hour, both stations now have Wheel Of Fortune and Jeopardy, which Cbc recently acquired the rights to. This replaces the sitcom reruns previously in that slot.

Other than that, there really haven't been any other major changes. If anyone would like to talk about past Ckws/Chex programming, email me at
alexhorton55@gmail.com

Saturday, September 27, 2008

I'M WITH YOU, LESLIE

Leslie Houston has been fired from the Manitoba Liberal party officially due to remarks made on an old blog. She said the U.S. government knew about 9/11 and Israeli business people didn't come to work in the World Trade Centre that day, both of which statements have evidence. Head of the Manitoba Liberal party Sharon Carstairs said there was no place for conspiracy theories in the Liberal party, then in typical liberal fashion said the party believed in tolerance. Yeah, Sharon, and you sure tolerate people that have views different from those officially held.

WHISPER AGAINST CHILD ABUSE

Next Wednesday, in a town near where I live, there is going to be a Shout Against Child Abuse. People are going to gather in the parking lot of a local mall and shout that they want an end to child abuse.

Yeah, like that's going to help anything.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Q'S SWITCHING TIME SLOTS

As of September 29, the Cbc radio show Q will be moving from2:00 p.m. eastern to 10:00 a.m. eastern.

What the buck. Who wants to listen to an arts and entertainment show at 10:00 in the morning.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

AMONG THE AFGHANS

by Arthur Bonner Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 1986.

Journalist Bonner tells about his trips to Afghanistan in 1985 and 1986, during which he spent time with the Mojaheden to learn about their side of the Russia-Afghanistan conflict.

Though this book is very dated, it can teach us lessons about the present conflict in Afghanistan. What I took from this book was that Afghanistan basically consists of a bunch of different tribes who have not entirely gotten over their ancient quarrels, and who also have a unique culture unto themselves. Therefore, I think the best thing we could do for that country is, ultimately, to have all foreign government involvement stop there and leave the Afghans to themselves.

Also, on a slightly lighter note, this book puts things into perspective in a different way. As Bonner talks about his various health problems and hardships in Afghanistan, you find yourself thinking, "Gee, I think I have problems!"

I wish Christians had one tenth the dedication of the Mojaheden.

CANADIAN FEDERAL ELECTION

So, who should be Prime Minister? Layton is a socialist fool. Dione is Dione. Stephen Harper's government had a bill before Parliament that would have effectively outlawed most nutritional supplements, and let's not forget the copyright bill.

None of these men are qualified to be Prime Minister. All I can say is try to find a good fringe party in your riding.

These men will run nothing

Monday, September 15, 2008

WHAT WBCQ MEANS TO ME

I first started listening to Wbcq in the summer of 1999. I had listened a few times before while dxing but it was July of 1999 when I first started listening to it regularly. I was Dxing one Saturday afternoon and came across Tom and Deryl doing a Christmas in July show with all these funny sketches. I knew that, if this was the kind of programming this new Wbcq was broadcasting, I wanted to keep listening to it. I tuned in later and heard Big Steve Cole’s Different Kind Of Oldies show

At the time, I had just completed grade 10 at the W. Ross Macdonald School for the Blind in Brantford, Ontario. It was the kind of place where nobody cared about anything important, only the latest sports scores and fluff news. I am not exaggerating when I say Wbcq saved me mentally. I couldn’t imagine what returning to school would have been like if I hadn’t known Wbcq existed.

In Wbcq’s programmers, I found people who cared about world issues. Through shows like American Viewpoint, Jeff Davis, Hour Of The Time, The Right Perspective, The Hal Turner Show and others, I got many perspectives and opinions that, especially living in Canada and being in the days before I had learned to use the internet, I wouldn’t have gotten anywhere else. I should also add to this list one of the first, if not the first episodes of Allen Weener Worldwide that helped me form a large part of my opinion about drugs.

Through shows like Uncle Ed’s Musical Memories, Amos ‘n Andy, Marion’s Attic, Fred Flintstone’s Music Show, Idio Audio, The Album Zone, The Pab Sungenez Project, The RMF Show, Pan Global Wireless, The Lumpy Gravy Radio Show, 867-5309, and various things that Michael Ketter did, I was exposed to music, comedy and entertainment that both amused and educated me.

In hosts like the above-mentioned Tim Tron, Larry and Jane and Michael Ketter, I discovered interesting people who cared about more than just their day-to-day lives. I also really enjoyed Allen Weener Worldwide, the adventures of a guy in small-town northern Maine trying (and succeeding) to run a radio station.

I also want to give a special mention to Johnny Lightning and Radio New York International. JL’s show is certainly a combination of all the attributes mentioned above. Johnny particularly helped me make sense of the world in those years when I was going to the School For The Blind.

Happy anniversary Wbcq. I certainly hope you’ll stay on the air for years to come with the same admirable free speech policy. Though the quality of the general programming has varied over the years depending on the clients you have at any given time, I’ve always found something interesting to listen to week after week.

Sincerely,
Alex Horton

WELCOME TO THE ALEX HORTON BLOG

Welcome to the Alex Horton blog. This will be a blog featuring a variety of topics. If you check this blog, you will find a number of things: book reviews, comments on news, maybe even a recipe. Check back often, you never know what you'll find.