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Lou Pickney's Online Commentary

November 2001

November 21, 2001
8:33 AM EST

November sweeps is rolling right along down here in Tampa. Thanksgiving tomorrow doesn't count in sweeps, but I still have to work. One of the sacrifices I made getting into the TV biz is knowing I'd have to work alot of holidays. That comes with the territory, and it's something I deal with so I can do what I enjoy for a living.

Tomorrow I'm going over to my friend Brian's house for some Thanksgiving dinner. Should be good. Planning the sleep schedule will be a little tricky... but I'll figure it out. A couple of interesting NFL games tomorrow... Will the Lions get a win? I say: no. It would be interesting for them to be 0-15 going into the final week... a home game against the Cowboys. That'd be drama.

November 18, 2001
12:43 AM EST

I just read an excellent article by Scott Miller of which makes a very clear and well-stated case against Major League Baseball and their attempt at eliminating two of its teams. In particular, the chronicle of the mismanagement by Carl Pohlad is fascinating, if not disturbing. Read it for yourself here.

It was nice to see Baywalk in St. Petersburg last night for the first time. I see the parallels between it and Centro Ybor, and there are a number of reasons why Baywalk is having more success at this point. What Centro Ybor really needs is a place like Dan Marino's to open up there.

Congratulations are in order for my good friend Desi Capaz, who has accepted a director job over at WFLA-TV. Way to go Desi -- and enjoy what will now be a much shorter commute to and from work.

Things at WTSP are going well though. My new news director, Lane Michaelsen, has done a tremendous job so far. We're having (in my opinion) a good November book, but really we're building toward 2002 at this point in our planning.

It's mid-November.. and the high temperature today in Tampa is 82 degrees. In mid-November! I tell you what, this weather just doesn't get old. There are things I miss about living in Indiana and West Virginia, but I don't miss having to scrape ice off my windshield at all. Whatsoever.

My friend Aaron Royal let me borrow some of his pro wrestling tapes, and I've been watching his federation, IPW. He works as a play-by-play broadcaster for the group's TV, and he does a good job with it. I've been invited to go to the IPW show in St. Pete this Saturday, which should be fun. With both WCW and ECW out of business, there's not much of an alternative to the WWF... and with the WWF's product floundering so bad in the McMahon family self-adulation, it's nice to have at least some sort of alternative. Some of the IPW guys worked the XWF TV Tapings this past week in Orlando, so good luck to them.

It's about kickoff time for the NFL... more later.

November 14, 2001
9:57 AM EST

I urge you to read this article... and keep it in mind when politicans claim there's no way we can afford to lower federal income taxes...

November 13, 2001
8:41 AM EST

It was the week of bad calls and such in the NFL. First of all, the refs in Sunday's Colts/Dolphins game should be admonished and written up for their horrible job. To miss the blatant holding by Patrick Surtain on Marvin Harrison was inexcusable, and the erroneously called interception where it was dual-possession (with the tie going to the receiver) was a joke. Then, as if that wasn't bad enough, last night the Titans got hosed against the Ravens. Steve McNair runs for a TD to seemingly give the Titans a win with an extra point, but then the refs decide to overrule themselves AFTER THE PLAY? No whistles were blown, but because replays can't be reviewed they decide to make a little impromptu review session of their all. What an embarassment.

Speaking of embarassing, I failed to mention before how awful the playcalling was at the end of Saturday's Georgia/Auburn game. No timeouts and the ball on the 4 or wherever it was and :14 seconds to go on first down, and they RUN it!?!?! Ridiculous. I'll have to remember to give Amy grief about that at work; why couldn't her Bulldogs have called that against Tennessee earlier this year??

November 11, 2001
9:45 AM EST

For once, I'm at a bit of a loss for what to write about. It's been a rather sedate weekend for me by Tampa standards, but that's ok. Sometimes it's good to rest up. On Friday night I showed my friend Scott from work who's boss in Madden 2002. In our final game of the evening, he went up 14-0 (as the Bucs at home vs. me as the Jaguars), but a pair of Alvis Whitted punt returns helped me pull away for the win. Sorry about the beating(s) Scott, but you'll get a chance for revenge on down the line.

Florida looked brutal against a very good South Carolina team last night. With the Big 12 teams still likely to beat up on one another down the stretch, Florida might just sneak into national title game. You never know.

Right now I'm listening to 91.1 WRVU over the internet. They play some out-there stuff sometimes, and I felt like listening. Right now the DJ is giving out the station's phone number in something barely passable as English. But hey, it beats corporate radio.

There are some key NFL games today. The Colts have to beat the Dolphins. If they don't, they'll drop to 1-3 at home... and that doesn't get the job done in the NFL.

November 9, 2001
11:09 AM EST

"The kids better buy my rookie card now
Cause after this year the price ain't comin down"
-Mos Def "Oh No"

If you missed the show "24" earlier this week, Fox will be replaying it tonight. Check it out, it's worth a look.

The work week is over, and it went well. A nice, solid, not-too-crazy week through November sweeps. And there's something to be said for that.

This morning on the CBS (or was it CNN?) feed, they were showing live pictures from "Ground Zero", the sight of the WTC collapse in New York. It was amazing to me just how vast the scene is, and how much of it is still burning, almost two months later. Unreal.

November 6, 2001
9:59 PM EST

I'm about to leave for work, so I'll keep this brief. I just watched the new show "24" on Fox... and I was very impressed. Believe the hype -- it's excellent. Reminds me of the movie Traffic in some ways. Maybe Traffic meets a Harrison Ford movie? I'll make the time to watch it next week -- I know that.

My cell phone is causing a few frustrations... It's having trouble cutting out here in my apartment. Not quite what I had in mind from that standpoint... though otherwise, I'm very happy with it.

November 5, 2001
9:31 PM EST

"And if it's real, well I don't want to know"
-No Doubt "Don't Speak"

Damn the Diamondbacks. It looked like my Yankees were going to win the World Series, but Arizona rallied in the bottom of the ninth last night to win 3-2. Ugh. But I must say, if the Yankees had to lose, at least it was in a series that is up there with the all-time classics in drama and suspense.

I've felt a strange exhaustion lately, in combination with feeling sick. I've heard the building where I work referred to as a "sick building" (i.e. colds linger there and hit everyone sooner or later). I managed to muster the energy to work out tonight, so hopefully I won't feel dead tired like I did last night at work.

If you haven't seen the show Boston Public... I highly recommend it. While not Sopranos-great, it's still an excellent program. Fox has the two best shows on broadcast TV with Boston Public and The Simpsons. West Wing is right up there too (and if The Sopranos couldn't win the Emmy for Best Drama, then I'm happy for West Wing to get it).

November 3, 2001
9:34 PM EST

"Oh no, I see
A spiderweb is tangled up with me"
-Coldplay "Trouble"

After months of planning to get a cell phone, I finally went through with it on Friday. I did some research on-line, then went over to Beepers & Phones. They did an excellent job giving me the info on all the various possibilities, and I settled on what I think is a good deal with AT&T. Plus, I managed to do some negotiating to get the price of the Nokia phone knocked down, so I sealed the deal and signed up.

Right now my Yankees are taking a solid beating in the desert against the D-Backs. But... Game 7 should be one for the ages... Schilling vs. Clemens.

November 1, 2001
9:59 PM EST

I'm about to head out the door... But before I head to work, I have two words: GO YANKEES!

Last night, I was at the station, working on putting my newscast together, and watching Game 4 of the World Series. It was 3-1 Diamondbacks, two outs in the bottom of the ninth, and Tino Martinez at the plate with a runner on first. Ned Roberts, one of our reporters, was cheering for Arizona; I was pulling for my Yankees (of course). Dave Wirth, who was doing sports last night, commented a moment before that they'd have baseball in Sports in a Minute, that is unless it went to extra innings. And... wouldn't you know it, Martinez cranked a two run jack to right field, tying the game. I jumped up and down like I had won the bonus round of Wheel of Fortune. Ned was none too pleased about the turn of events. Then, in the 10th inning, in the first at-bat ever in November for Major League Baseball, Derek Jeter hit a walk-off, game-winning home run of his own, giving New York a 4-3 win in 10, tying the series at 2 games apiece. Very nice, indeed...

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