BONG Bull 678
The Burned-Out Newspapercreatures Guild's World-Famous Encyclical
Copyright © 2006 by BONG
Reproduced with permission on Common Sense Journalism to provide an RSS feed for any who want one. All opinions and content are those of Charley Stough. Some links have been shortened to fit the format.
For July 26, 2006. What, Oprah, you're NOT gay? What, Mainstream Media, you LED with that? All right, everybody down to the bar for a seminar in what to do on a slow news day, says the Burned-Out Newspapercreatures Guild, and this is BONG Bull No. 678!
KINKY NEWS. Yeah, well, speaking of slow news, somebody at Fox News wonders why the press is fascinated by Kinky Friedman, candidate for governor of Texas.
First of all, Kinky doesn't really seem to be fascinating nearly as many reporters as any new Toyota.
And second, if any candidate in Delaware or Connecticut never lights his cigar, has a campaign slogan of "Why the hell not?" and has a band called the Texas Jewboys, yes, then someone's burying the lede.
But here's the reason this newsman is cheering for Kinky: He ain't a Republican. He's not in the state legislature that went dead-bug for Tom DeLay.
He's not in the majority that interrupted a special session on school finance to whip through a bill to protect poor struggling real estate developers who build schools and houses laced with scrap asbestos in their insulation.
He's not the Republican governor who signed it into law, so if you find toxic waste salted into your house you can't file a lawsuit until you or your children have the incurable cancer. That could take decades, and by then the developer will have a school named for him and be living beachside in Costa Rica.
And most of all, Kinky's not a Texas newspaper editor who looked at the Asbestos Sprinklers Relief Act, down there in the little type at the bottom of the statehouse story, gasped, rose to full stature almost as tall as the water cooler and galvanized newsroom crusaders with the famous shout, "Quick! Another editorial against flag burning, and write it like you mean it!"
LOVING THE TECHNOLOGY. When the Annual Evaluations, Root Canal and Funner Things Committee hit on the photo editors' convention poster for BB 677, little did they know that they were on the threshold of a new era. Not only can they make you a real 16x20 poster as seen here but they can splice in the personally tailored rubber-stamped line "Do Not Use Facing the Comics Page Without OK From (Your Name Here)." And it's only $25 plus postage! Wow, what a coup for your cubicle, dorm room or executive washroom! See the poster, based on the BACK side of an old 8x10 print from every newspaper morgue, here
PRODUCTION TIP. Every columnist has his or her dry moments. Shame. If Henry Alford can write in the NYT about the books people keep near their toilets, you have no excuse for writer's block. Unless of course you're the food writer, in which case you can recycle that 16-parter about oregano. See Alford's output.
REPORTING ALERT. A major midwestern font of knowledge really paid a reporter to write:
"Like the decorative rock that now sits in front of Stebbins High School bearing a plaque honoring him, retiring Superintendent Alex DiNino will be remembered for his steady leadership of the Mad River Local School District."
COMIX SECTION. Herman "Speed" Graphic, ace photographer for the Chagrin Falls Commercial Scimitar, and his Faithful Companion, Typo the Wonder Pig will return in the next edition.
BONG Bull is the product of Burned-Out Newspapercreatures Guild Chief Copyboy Charley Stough, in codger's paradise overlooking Dayton, Ohio. E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org for any reason.