Jennifer D. Wade Journal

Welcome to my online diary, enjoy your stay!

Blog posts December 2006

Saddam Hussein - Part II

A co-worker of mine mentioned her feelings about the execution of Saddam Hussein, and I agree:  It's weird that he's dead.  By that I mean, it's hard to believe - difficult to fathom, I guess - that he's gone.  The man who, for years, has been an icon of evil, is dead.  Not coming back. 

I realize that he was convicted of mass murder and sentenced to death.  Within the past couple of days, the prospect of that death became increasingly imminent.  First, it was that he would be executed within 30 days.  Then, we heard that it would probably be before the end of the year.  By Thursday night, the time frame had been narrowed to 36 hours.  By Friday afternoon, we heard on good authority that the execution would happen sometime around 10:00 p.m.  And, that's when it happened.

So, it's not like we didn't know, or we weren't prepared.  By mid-afternoon, I had my lead story at 11 slugged "Saddam Execution."  But, still, he's dead.  Wow.

It will be interesting to see if the "Princess Diana Syndrome" sets in with Saddam.  Diana's death happened suddenly and under controversial circumstances.  It took a while for it to sink in that she was dead.  I couldn't really figure out why until I read an article in, I believe, TV Guide.  The article pointed out that it was difficult to accept Diana being dead because, for days, weeks, and months after her death, news programs constantly showed pictures of her when she was alive.

So, I wonder if the same will happen with Saddam.  I'm guessing, probably not.  In this case, reality will set in very quickly.

Go Back

Saddam Hussein

He's #3.

Go Back

Slow News Day?

So, as I'm perusing the online pages of the local newspapers this morning, I come across the following article in the Times News:

Brother, Sister Cited Following Fight :  A Tamaqua brother and sister have both been cited by police following an incident in the borough on Dec. 21.  Officers responded to (street address omitted by me), Tamaqua, at 10:17 a.m. for a possible domestic incident. At the scene, they found Karen and Richard (last name omitted by me) involved in a fist fight. The brother and sister were fighting because Richard allegedly ate Karen's eggs. Both were cited for harassment.

Wow.  I would hate to see what happens if one drinks the other's beer.

The other thing about this story is that the incident occured on December 21st.  According to the newspaper's web site, the article appeared on December 27th.  I guess the editors were saving it for a really slow news day.

Go Back

Gerald Ford

Former president Gerald Ford died tonight.  It was just before 11:30 p.m. when an alert from ABC News came across a screen in the control room.  It said that Ford had died and to stand by for a possible special report.  We still had about five minutes to go in the newscast, and I kept watching the wires for confirmation, but none came.  So, we didn't mention it.  I heard the official report about 15 minutes later, as I drove home.

If I recall, Ford was the first president I ever voted for.  I was just shy of eight-years-old when he took office in 1974, and 10 when he ran against Carter in 1976.  Too young to vote for real, obviously, but I seem to remember that we had one of those "mock" elections in school, and we cast our votes on an actual voting machine.  I voted for Ford and Bob Dole, even though (if I remember correctly), my mother managed to stick some sort of "Vote for Carter" message on my sweater before I left the house!

Anyway, some of us in the newsroom (me included) were complaining earlier in the evening about what a slow news week this would be.  In general, nothing much happens between Christmas and New Year's.  I don't think it's going to be slow anymore. 

And then, there's the big question of who will be number three?  It's a well-known rule in newsrooms that famous people die in threes.  The current string is James Brown (on Christmas day) and Ford.  Who will be next?

Go Back

Sherman on YouTube

Well, I was all set to write a very bah-humbug entry about my day - starting with the old guy in a hat driving the car in front of me.  Just when I thought he was going to slow me down, he made a left turn - on red!  Ha!  I wasn't expecting that from the old geezer!  Highly illegal, but at least it got him out of my way. 

Then, I was going to write about all the bat-shit crazy people who called the station today, and I answered their phone calls!  Like, the guy who told me that his life is being threatened because he's a key witness in FOUR major criminal cases.  What's his proof?  Well, for one thing, someone had him committed to the psych ward for a few weeks.  Hard to believe, I know.

But, rather than bore you with those details, I'll share this.  Someone posted the link on Talkback and, as always, I am Proud to Steal.  It's a link to a clip of Action 16's Sherman Burdette at last month's Santa Parade in Scranton.  Sherman was the Grand Marshal, and the high school chorus that entertained the crowd all day had a special song for the consumer reporter extraordinaire.

HERE's the link.

Go Back

Give Me a Break!

T.O. gets fined $35K for spitting in the face of an opposing player.  T.O's response?  He says it was an accident.  Uh huh.

An ad for the movie "The Good Shepherd" (Matt Damon, Robert De Niro, Angelina Jolie) features this endorsement:  The greatest spy movie ever!  Ever!  (OK, I added that one.)   Wanna know who that endorsement is from?  Larry King!  And he should know because he just had the stars on his show! 

Go Back

What Do I Win?

Did you hear the news?  Because I have a blog, I have been named Time Magazine's Person of the Year!  Totally unexpected, but much appreciated.  I never expected anything like this.  Of course, since this is my award, it figures that I have to share it with millions of other people who also have blogs.

See, here's the thing.  In what may be the lamest award ever (with the possible exception of those Medals of Freedom that GWB has been handing out - I can't wait 'til Rummy gets his), Time named "You" as its "Person of the Year."  HERE is an article about it.  In this case, "You" is you, me, and everyone else who has access to the Internet.  The magazine cover features a mirrored computer screen so that when you loook at the cover, you see You!  Isn't that clever.

At any rate, Time has decided that We, the denizens of the digital world, should be honored for the hours we spend writing these little blogs, or posting pictures on MySpace, or spreading the world's funniest videos via YouTube.  Because we can point, click, and maybe even type half-decently, We are the Person of the Year.

 I wonder who it will be next year?  Maybe one of those penguins from "Happy Feet?"  Give me a break. 

Go Back

Worst Person in the World

If you ever watch "Countdown" on MSNBC, you know that, every night, Keith Olbermann chooses someone as the "Worst Person in the World."  Actually, he picks three people - worse, worser (his word, not mine), and worst.  On many occasions, the "worst" person is Bill O'Reilly of Fox News (and a WNEP alum!).

Anyway, I think that, tonight, Keith got it wrong.  His pick for worst person was some woman in Europe who screwed up on picking lottery numbers for her group of friends.  Seems they've been playing the same numbers for years, and recently, those numbers finally came up!  The jackpot of $36 million was theirs at last!  Except, it wasn't.  The woman who bought the ticket screwed up and picked one wrong number or something, so no one won anything.  A terrible mistake, I suppose, if you thought you had finally won.  But, not criminal.

Which is why I say that, if Keith had called me, I would have told him to pick Jessica Hardy as today's "Worst Person in the World."  Jessica Hardy is a local woman, and when she was arrested back in February, I blogged about it HERE.  To summarize, Jessica Hardy ran a local chapter of the Make-A-Wish Foundation.  The group raises money so that terminally ill children can have at least one wish - like a trip to Disney World or something.  Hardy ran the local chapter for about nine years.  And, for about nine years, she invented sick children - just made them up - and kept their "wishes" for herself.  She enjoyed hot tubs, TVs, etc. -  until the cops carted them out of her house.

What she did is low!  Ever since her arrest, my friend and I have compared other suspected criminals to Jessica Hardy and, I can tell you, there aren't many who rate lower than her.

Anyway, today Jessica Hardy pleaded guilty to forgery and other related crimes.  She will be sentenced in January or February.  I don't know what her sentence will be, but I hope it's something befitting a woman who you could make a case for as the Worst Person in the World.

Go Back

Just for Laughs

One of the funniest things I ever saw was ventriloquist Jay Johnson and Darwin on "The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson."  Must have been about 1985 or '86, because I can remember my college roommate and I just laughing hysterically at the routine.

THIS CLIP is from a fairly recent Letterman show, but it's similar to the Carson stint and very, very funny.

For more laughs, check out THIS RIFF on Janet Jackson from the gals at Go Fug Yourself.  Classic!

Go Back

Cuff Him

On Tuesday, I came across the following story on the AP wire.  It involved a mom in South Carolina who had her own 12-year-old son arrested - because he unwrapped a Christmas present early.  The following article appeared in a newspaper called the Rock Hill Herald:

A 12-year-old Rock Hill boy wouldn’t wait to unwrap his Christmas present. But his defiance landed him in trouble with the law after his mother and great-grandmother called police.

The boy’s great-grandmother had told him not to open his Nintendo Game Boy Advance, which she had wrapped and placed beneath the Christmas tree, according to a police report.

But Sunday morning, she found the box of the popular hand-held game console unwrapped and opened. Both the great-grandmother and the mother said they asked the boy where the present was. He said he didn’t know. When the mother threatened to call the police, the boy got the Game Boy from his room, the report said.

The 27-year-old mother called the police anyway, she said Monday, because she didn’t feel she had any other option in dealing with the child she says “can’t stand authority.”

“He took it without permission. He wanted it. He just took it,” the 63-year-old great-grandmother said. The boy was arrested on petty larceny charges, taken to the Rock Hill police station in handcuffs and held until his mother picked him up after church.

That's about as far as the story went when I read it on the AP wire.  However, the newspaper article goes further, saying that the mother is a single mom who also has a 7-year-old daughter.  The 12-year-old boy has been diagnosed with ADHD, but his medicine doesn't seem to help.

The mother, the article says, is putting herself through college and is at her wit's end as far as her son is concerned.  According to the article, the boy was arrested last month at his "alternative" school when he took a swing at a police officer.  The mother says that neither that arrest nor this one seemed to phase him.  He apparently gets off on the attention.  It will be up to the juvenile courts in South Carolina to decide what happens to the boy now.

The mother hopes he can be "scared straight."  I say this boy won't scare easily.

Go Back

Work Dreams Redux

I had another one of those "work" dreams the other night.  If you recall, I had one over the summer, and blogged about it HERE.  As weird as that one was, this one was weirder.

In this dream, I was back at my old station in Harrisburg.  It didn't really look like my old station in Harrisburg, but that's where I must have been because my former boss was there and so was the chief engineer.  The dream also included a couple of people from my high school class.  I have no idea what they were doing there.

Anyway, my former boss was at his desk, working away.  When I worked with him (in real life), he had brown 80's rock star hair.  In my dream, he still had the rock star hair except it was all white.

Also in my dream, all of the computers were missing.  We had no way to put together a newscast because the computers were gone and there didn't seem to be any typewriters around.  Not that anyone had time to look for them because my high school classmates were there and they needed to be shown around the station or something.

I also seem to recall that, in my dream, there was some sort of problem with my shoes.  Namely, that they didn't match.  I would find one shoe, then look for the other one, but all I could find was one shoe from another pair, and one shoe from a third pair.  So, I think I had three unmatched shoes.

I have no idea what this dream meant.  But, when you consider the inevitability of a meltdown at work, the embarrassment of having unmatched shoes, and the appearance of friends from 25 years ago, it's probably a good thing I woke up when I did.   

Go Back

Somebody Was Thirsty

So, I went to "the Chopper" this morning.  And, just as I'm about to walk in to the grocery store, a guy is walking out.  He didn't have any bags; just a one-gallon jug of water.  And, he was taking a nice big swig as he walked out the door.  Not there's anything wrong with that.  I mean, I suppose he paid for it first.

Go Back

12 blog posts