I’ve always been a big fan of The Dagger – great local news with an edge. No matter what technological advancements do to change the way we get as consumers receive our news, the fact is that the way news is gathered will never change: great reporters with open eyes and ears and ready pencils have to get it. The Dagger has always done that and in preparing for various radio shows over the years, The Dagger has been one of my main daily stops for info.
That said, when I decided I needed a forum for the random garbage that floats through my head on any given day I knew the Dagger was where I wanted to be. So I asked them if they would be kind enough to clear an inch or two of space for me, and they have. Therefore, before I can even really begin this column, I needed to take a second and sincerely thank the Dagger for this opportunity, for their years of support and friendship and as always, some of the best local info anywhere.
Introduction & Perspective
So if you don’t know me, shame on you. I’m FANTASTIC…kidding (mostly).
Anyway, I’ll run down my particulars – even I am not so egomaniacal as to think that everyone knows me.
I am a Harford County native, graduate (just barely) of Edgewood High. (The year is unimportant, and will remain secret at this time). I started on the radio as part of the legendary “Rouse & Company” morning show on WQSR with fellow Harco resident Steve Rouse. (How is Steve? He’s great. He’s a full-time farmer now, and I’ll get into it in a future column. We’re still close friends). I was a part of that show for 11 of its 15 ratings topping years. It was fantastic (stories of our misadventure will come at a later time). In 2005 when the station changed format, I was moved to over to produce and co-host the Ed Norris Show. From 2005 to 2008 we topped the midday talk ratings by talking about all the stories that no one else wanted to touch. We accomplished a lot and again, I won’t bore you with war stories right now. In fall of 2008 we were moved to mornings when the station changed format to Sports Talk. Originally, the show was left unchanged, but station management felt strongly in early 2010 that the show needed to more closely reflect the sports content that is on the rest of the day. In early June, after 16 years with CBS radio, I was let go – mainly because I just don’t care about sports. To their credit they were very kind about it, and it was very amicable as these things go. In fact I am still discussing some projects with CBS and I have a lot of great friends there. I cannot and will not say anything negative about CBS or my experiences there. (And before you ask Ed, Ken & Kevin had nothing to do with it. They are still my buds and always will be. Eddie is my daughter’s Godfather and one of my best pals.)
My personal life stays personal – my family and friends and especially my children did not ask to live life in the public eye and I will never intentionally drag them into it. It’s just not fair. So if you are ever insulted by my reluctance to share details of my personal life, too bad. Maintaining my family’s privacy is one of the main reasons I use a fake name. (Yes “Maynard” is a fake name. No, I won’t tell you my real name. It’s a poorly kept secret at best. If you want to know, ask anyone from Harford County, they all seem to know).
My band the “Mobtown Saints” plays all over the region from Atlantic City to DC – modern and classic rock. Our shows are fun, come check us out: www.mobtownsaints.com . You can be sure that some of the weird stories from the road will end up here.
What’s next? I have several things in the works, most of which I cannot talk about at this time. Confidentiality agreements are no joke. Rest assured that I will return soon – probably the fall.
Being without a job has actually been a great experience as bizarre as it sounds. It’s given me a really new perspective on life and since I haven’t had a vacation for real since 2000 de-stressing has been great.
I think my hair is growing back!
And, not to be trite, but you really do find out who your friends are.
In fact so many of my media friends called and e-mailed me that I have to stop a sec ond thank a few of them personally for their kindness so pardon the momentary name dropping.
The Rouse crew: Steve, Mike, Kristie and Tom have all been right in my corner as always – they are family, the inimitable Ron Matz who I still love watching, Dick Gelfman & family, Sarah Caldwell the most beautiful TV anchor in town – inside and out, Mickey Cuchiella one funniest and classiest guys I’ve ever known, Steady Eddie Norris , Mollie at Metro, Gary Stein, Vance at Sheffield, La Vos! Bret Hollander and the only politicians I trust: Bel Air Town Commissioner Terry Hanley, the great Pat McDonough and Mrs. McDonough and of course all of Team Ehrlich.
Finally, I have to truly from the bottom of my heart thank all of the fans and listeners who have supported me on and off air over the years. All of the e-mail and letters I have gotten since being let go I printed and saved so that I might share them with my little ones when they are old enough to understand. There are simply no words to describe what those notes mean to me and the gratitude that I have to all of you for allowing me to what it is that I do is endless.
Now that all of the self-indulgent nonsense is out of the way…
This little column
If you’ve made it this far, I applaud you. I write like I talk – sort of stream of consciousness; and I use parenthetical references as though I were E.E. Cummings’ long lost son. I do that because I feel like anything I write should be like my half of a dialogue.
I’m sure my English teachers are ashamed but I can’t apologize for it. It’s just who I am. I will apologize to the Dagger staff who may try to edit this at some point…good luck…
So what’s this all about? Glad you asked.
On the Norris show, and even on the Rouse show, I took great pride in the fact that we discussed things no one else would or could discuss. Media people by and large are afraid of so many things. I’m not. I want this column to be a spot where I can bring you those stories, my opinions on them and hopefully I can learn about some of yours. I believe you can not only handle the ugly truths, but that you can discuss them openly.
Mainstream media are taught that the average audience member has about a 5th grade comprehension and they dumb things down. I give you way more credit than that and will never dumb things down. I trust that if there is something you do not understand you will take the time to learn or ask.
If you’re an old friend, thanks for sticking with me. If you’re a new friend, welcome. If you don’t really like me, I don’t care and screw you. You’re probably too stupid to have read this far anyway.
This is way longer than I intended, so like Ted Koppel, I must apologize to the affiliates. Tomorrow I have a great story for you about Sebastian Bach, Danny Bonaduce, Aaron Lewis of Staind and a busload of nuns.
No I’m not joking – I would never joke about Danny Bonaduce.