Monday, January 13, 2014

It's Over

Dateline: January 12, 2014

From: The Beach

Well bitches, it's over, like Rover. Like my Range Rover, anyway, which thank GOD, I just made my last payment on, though I'm renting the wheels. They're those trippy ones that keep spinning, even though I'm Detroit leaning at the traffic light, checkin' out the ladies in the next lane in the candy apple red Miata. WAIT, that's CC Tribeca, I think. "HEY, sweetstuff, we can hang now that I'm not your boss! WHADDYA THINK? HOLLA!" I say, my prescription Tony Stark Matsuda shades I picked up for $10 on Amazon slid down my nose. Then, the cono flips me off and guns it, (notice the use of Spanish, since I've been listening to Berlitz, hoping for a gig at Univision, since they hired that tool Ethan Harriman that I fired, after he couldn't get my AOL handle changed from "ColonelHogan," when I got a C&D from Bing Crosby, the "White Christmas" guy who owns the rights to the name)!

There's good news and bad news.

Good news: I don't have to work for Boba Pitt anymore, which means the weekly chore of polishing his fake eye gets crossed off my "Dumb Things I Gotta Do" list. Note to my replacement: When you're washing the eye, do NOT use Windex (Boba will scream at you because it will sting like a muther when he puts it back in) or just pop it in your mouth and swish it around with a swallow of Smart Water. I did that once, and accidently swallowed it. He had to go almost the entire day wearing his Hello Kitty eyepatch, until the eye became accessible (think about that) and HE WAS NOT HAPPY. I think the main reason for my dismissal, though, was the incident the Monday after Thanksgiving, when I tried for 20 minutes to remove his REAL EYE, because it's so goddamn hard to tell the good one from the fake one, and he was dead asleep most of the day. Little news flash: Boba's got a serious problem with Triptophan abuse, and I hear he's going to rehab for the cure, sometime in February. Second note to my replacement: When you're talking to Boba Pitt, just pick and eye and stick with it. He'll notice when you switch peepers, and get all prickly about it.

Bad news: Despite the generous severance package they laid on me, I found out last night that they hit my PayPal Debit card for $44.7 BILLION for the single fucking cardboard box they gave me to pack up my shit and leave yesterday afternoon, Triple Bitches that they are. That's going to leave my "parting gifts" at about $1,255 out the door. Shit, that's what I pay my eyeglass-polisher every week, so after next week, I'm broke. DAY-UM!

On the other hand, they haven't filled my part-time job at the check cashing store in San Antonio, so Monty D, the manager there says I can have that gig back. All is not lost.

Here's how it went down:

Yesterday, about 1pm, after lunch, I went to Boba's office to get the eye for cleaning, and he says, "Hey, John Boy" (my nickname, which he coined in early 2012, changing it from "Four Eyes," which I HATED), "Uh yeahhhhhh...Would you come in here a minute?" I shut down the porn on my iMac and went into his three-floor office (complete with wet bar and Soda Stream machine, the lucky fuck) and asked him if he wanted the door closed. "No, this will just take a minute," he says.

It actually took about 23 seconds (I timed it) for him to tell me he'd been going over my personnel file, and found several memos about this thing I'd done a few years ago. He said he was very impressed with it, and wanted to implement it immediate. He says "We're going to see if less John Hogan is really MORE John Hogan," and that he was going to start right then. When I got back to my cube, there was my $44.7 Billion "exit package" which was a lightly used cardboard banker's box with the words "John Hogan, get the fuck out of here" written in sharpie on the box. I didn't even get to keep the sharpie. There was also a COBRA form dated June of 2011, so I'm going to be paying for my testosterone shots and foot fungal cream out of pocket, for fuck's sake. Thank God Obamacare's going to take care of those things.

So, I'm sitting on the beach, on my fifth pink squirrel, and thinking about what's next for the Hoganator. My base of operations will be the Speedy Cash in SA, but I'm considering a couple opportunities. I've got an in with an intern who sets up American Idol auditions (a sure thing), but also thinking about taking classes to get a Real Estate license (I hear you can make boatloads of dough with that), or becoming a bounty hunter like that Dog guy.

I wonder how long it would take to grow my hair out?

Later, suckers. See you on the sand, unless you need a smokin' deal on a bank refi crib, or jumped bail after that meth bust, in which case, I'm coming for you.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Move it, loser

Readers of this blog please take note. The opinions contained herein are not those of my employer, the radio industry, the FCC, Federal Government, or even myself. I was raised to believe that it was a sin to  have an opinion, but an even greater sin to not share the opinion of the person who signs your paycheck, so I pretty much agree with everything Boba Pitt thinks, because, well...He's a truly beautiful man. Now, I don't mean that in a sexual way. Well, I DO mean it that way, but not JUST that way. Hey, I'm straight as an arrow, but arrows have feathers at the end, so...

Okay, this is getting off the track and very, very weird. God, I wish my DELETE key hadn't popped off of my netbook and I could change things I've typed. Oh well.

The state of our radio business today is precarious. The Digital Revolution has taken root, and everything that's important is on the internets (except for "The Button Down Mind of Bob Newhart," which I can't find a free download of ANYWHERE). Boba Pitt has moved our company straight into the Digital Future (capital letters intended) and man, am I grateful for that. He's a genius. Not like those other two guys, Randall, Mark and of course Lowry (who BTW just had his Carbonite resealed, so he's good for another couple hundred years - yay!)

The whole "I'm in my car driving to and/or from work, listening to my car radio thing" is mercifully GONE, Chester. Nobody does that anymore. I'm not even sure they're putting radios in cars anymore. The fact is, if you're not on the internet, you're not relevent anymore. Streaming, Beaming, Podcasting, Blogging, Syncing, Tweeting, FBing, Emailing, Fornicating, Subliminalizing, Macrophiseologizing and even Bobbing and Weaving are all important Social Media elements that radio stations have got to master if they're going to survive.

And you know what each one of these important activities have in common?

Get ready for it, Philo. This is a big one. I guarantee you haven't thought of this one yet.

They all have "ing" at the end of them.

Yep. I  N  G. That that's key.

Activity. Doesn't matter what kind of activity. There's an old saying I've always subscribed to, ever since I was thinking about it one day and about a hundred of those SUBSCRIBE NOW cards fell out on the floor, which reminds me, How the HELL can a magazine travel all the way across the country with 20 or so of those cards in it, and then when I take out of the mailbox they ALL FALL OUT?

Anyway, I subscribe to the idea that activity is much, much, more important that what it is you're doing. There was once a guy I knew who used to say "Don't just DO something...STAND THERE," a different take on the old saying "you attract more flies with coffee on the wall than a pile of shit, Sherlock." Or something like that. Anyway, he used to go around advising against activity for its own sake - just to be looking busy. So, he'd say "HEY, HOAGGIE, DON'T JUST DO SOMETHING, STAND THERE!"

He died in the middle of a big, wide road in Atlanta checking his Blackberry. He got hit by a bus.

Should have moved, I guess.

Which is what I'm talking about today. Activity. Do it. Move. Change. Respond. Revise. Make waves. Argue. Occasionally try to go too long between bathroom breaks and accidentally pee in your pants just as you're getting to the urinal. Okay, I made that last one up. It's not a really good idea. It just happened to me yesterday.

But you get the idea. You couldn't possibly do something that's as important as looking like you're doing something important, whether you are or not.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Happy Kwanzmas!

Ho Ho Hogan!

Hoag-Dog here, blasting the Happy Holidays at 'cha, BITCHES! 


Man, I am still pumped from the fun we had at the first iHeartRadio Music Festival in Vegas last September. I'm not lyin'...Nicky Ménage and I kicked it hard, even though I had no idea who she was until my fourth Pink Squirrel at the bar that first night. I mean, I THOUGHT she was Kylie Minougue, but when she came in the room, I'm all...WHA??!!

Nice girl though. Very down to earth, not at all like that psycho-bitch Celine Dion, who we saw the next night. Celine and I had some drama a couple years back that, and I'm not going to lie to you here, almost made it to TV as the pilot for a reality TV show like "The Osbournes" or "Gene Simmons Family Ties" or whatever that show's called. Nothing sexual, mind you. Let's just say when Celine gets a little too much Drambuie in her, and Renee is off walking their little crap factory Poodle of theirs, that whole fake French accent falls away, and she's just Cindy Dutton, from Michigan City, Indiana.

Oh yea. Look it up on WickerPedia, BIATCH.

Of course, the iHRMF as its come to be known at the Radio Ranch, was supposed to be Bob Pittman's party, but really, he didn't do jack to organize it. I mean, I think we used his AMEX to put the deposit down on the rooms, but the heavy lifting was all me and my posse, and it was AWESOME. For a one-eyed guy, Boba Pitt (as we call him) is pretty cool. Wait a minute. You mean you didn't know that the dude only has one eye? True that...And here's the story:

Go to WickerPedia, and you'll see some bullshit about a horse kicking him when he was a kid. Yea, right. I think they stole that from Mad Men, where Don Draper's father gets killed by...A horse kicking him. Like horses really do that. What would the odds be that TWO people have been KILLED or had their eye whacked out by getting horse kicked? Come on.

There's also a pretty good story going around that Boba lost the eye in a prison shiv-fight over who owned a box of AOL floppy discs that had come in the mail. Boba said that because he had an ownership stake in AOL at the time, they were his, even though the envelope had been addressed to his cell mate. To be honest, I'm not buying that one, since it has been proven that he's never been in prison, which takes a lot of the wind out of the story.

The only possible story that remains, therefore, is the truth, that (and I have to warn you, you're going to hear this and go all...DUH! Of COURSE!) he's the inspiration for "Ralphie," the kid in "A Christmas Story," and actually shot out his eye with a BB gun. It's true, bitch. I swear.

Let's look at the proof.

1. Boba Pitt is missing an eye
2. The kid in the movie accidently shoots himself in the eye
3. "A Christmas Story" was written by Jean Shepherd, who by the way was NOT Edith on the hit TV show "All In the Family," but actually a guy who we know for certain, had DICKS for parents. Jean Shepherd was a radio guy. Yea, see? Drink it in, Rudolph - THAT'S proof. 

Little trivia here...When they were making "A Christmas Story," they wanted to hide Boba Pitt's involvement, so they were trying to change the whole BB gun to the eye thing. There are actually several scenes filmed that involved Ralphie accidently discharging the pellet gun at Darren McGavern, hitting him with a killer crotch shot. The catch phrase flor that version of the movie was "Be careful, or you'll shoot your Dad's nut off!"

Obviously, the test audiences didn't care for that approach as much, and it was shelved, but the story lingers that when McGavern died, he did so with a single BB still lodged in his left testicle.

So remember that, and as you celebrate this Holiday Season, whether it's Boba Pitt's eye, or Darren McGavern's ball, one time or another, ALL of us make sacrifices this time of year.

Ho Ho Ho Hogan OUT!

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

A Backstage View of the Hoganator

doc brown's train - Google Image SearchI know, that sounds dirty. But, I can't remember how to edit the title of a blog post, so it stays :-(

I get lots of emails. Most of them are nice, like "I'd like to invite you to be my friend on Headbook" which I usually ignore, because I'm kind of at my limit on friends right now. My wife's griping about how much time I spend on the phone at home. I've got a really nice Princess slimline ROTARY (telephone afficianados, go ahead and drool, losers).

As a business and industry leader, I often get emails asking for my help. For instance, recently, the son of the recently deceased former King of Nigeria, Albert Botsuanazulu reached out and asked me to help him. I can't talk about that too much right now, but Nigeria has long been a friend to the U.S., and since our President was born in Africa, I figured it would be unpatriotic not to help.

Unfortunately, I get a lot of negative criticism, too. When you have to make a lot of unpopular decisions, you get that. So, I thought I'd respond to a batch of them right here, right now.


There, that should take care of that.

You know, it's really disheartening to be trying to reinvent radio and have people accusing you of destroying it. Here I am, trying really hard to live up to the principals of my personal hero, Michael Scott of The Office, when everyone's trying to paint me as that tool David Wallace.

I am saving radio, and if you want to keep riding the radio train, well, buy a ticket and get onboard. The dining car is in the back, and there's an observation car up front. But don't stay up there too much, because that's actually more for Mark, Randal (note the one "l") and me. You'll need to stay in coach, or better yet, why don't you get to the coal bin and start shovelling, because this isn't one of those fancy nuclear flying trains like in Back to the Future III.


Friday, January 23, 2009

Pay Cuts

So, I'm sitting in my office. Well, my cube, and I see Randall in the mirror I had attached to my computer monitor so nobody could sneak up on me and catch me doing my fantasy football "work." It's not one of those plastic mirrors, either. It's an actual rear-view off a 1971 El Camino. I immediately knew something was up, because he was actually "knocking" on the virtual door I have taped off.

Uh-oh. He NEVER does that. Usually, he just waltzes in (although sometimes it's a foxtrot in, Saturday Night Fever in, or occasionally a robot in, when he's had too many Red Bulls after lunch) and sits down, immediately picking up and playing with my Hulk Hogan action figure.

Well, this time, he knocked and when I spun around in my chair, he asked if I had a minute or two to talk. I knew it. We were breaking up.

Randall sat down and started right in on what he wanted to talk about. "Johnny," he said, "Mark and I are biting the bullet and taking a pay cut. We'd like you to do the same." While he was talking, he wasn't looking at me, but eyeing Hulk Hogan. GOD, I wish he'd keep his hands off my Hogan.

"Wow. That's difficult," I said. "I've got expenses. I just leased a new car," nodding out the window at my new Honda Element. "Plus, the feed bill on those cows is ridiculous." Every month I get the bill for feeding my livestock options, and I'm wondering if they're feeding those damn bovines Prime Rib or something.

"I know," Randall replied, "Mark and I are feeling it. I'm having to think about cutting my first name down to one 'L.' The gold engraving for new stuff I buy is just outrageous. Thank God when great-great-grandpa came here from the old country, he shortend his name to 'Mays.' Otherwise, everytime I bought something, the engraver would have to inscribe 'Randall Mayscenphiouzwicz. That would so totally suck."

I nodded. See, another lesson. Everyone's got problems. I can be so self-centered sometimes.

"Sure, Randal," I said, making sure I pronounced only one of the Ls. "I'm in."

"Excellent, Johnny. You're a team player. You know, all great CEOs do this, Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, Fahrid..." Well, not Fahrid, but those other guys definitely do it." He clapped me on the back, took one more covetous look at my Hogan action figure and started out. Then, he stopped short and turned around again.

"OK, so I'll have Accounting reduce your salary to $1 per year. That's before taxes, of course. You'll have withholding from that. You know, it'll be a lot more effective to do it retroactive too. Let's say to...last November. Way to go! High five!" He put his hand up in the high-five position, but before I could get mine up and do the HF (which I've NEVER gotten to do with Randall...Er, sorry, RandaL), he dropped his hand, spun around, pretended to open the virtual door to my cube and walked out.

Leaving the damn door open. At least I still have Hulk.

Hogan out.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

We're in the newspaper

I know, you're thinking "there are still NEWSPAPERS out there?"

Well, at least in New York there is, and the New York Post has earned a big fat bitch-slap from the Hoganator with this piece of crap I came across while downloading Friday's Garfield.

Clear Channel Plans Revamp.

I guess the cat's out of the oven. Tuesday is the day...AFTER MONDAY!

LOL! Snap!

There are numerous errors in the story.

A precise headcount for the layoffs could not be obtained. Clear Channel has about 30,000 employees worldwide.

Right. 30,000 employees. Come on! I've never counted everyone. I mean, I tried one time, but they all kept moving around, so I'd count some of them twice and would have to start over. Then, Mark kept screwing with me by saying things like "four hundred eighteen, two thousand eight hundred and seven, twenty-nine..." Annoying. I hope he's one of the ones who gets fired.

Sources said an initial round of layoffs is expected to commence next Tuesday - not coincidentally the same day President-elect Barack Obama is to be sworn into office. Clear Channel managers are hoping they can slip in the layoffs while the press is preoccupied with Inauguration Day festivities, sources said.

LOL! Barack Obama?! That Hawaiian guy? Get a grip. We're doing it all on Tuesday because American Idol is on that night, and everybody will be too busy watching those idiots who can't sing, but think they're going to be the next American Idol to care about some DJs getting the boot and having to go back to selling drugs for a living.

To be sure, Bain Capital Partners and Thomas H. Lee Partners took a hard look at Clear Channel's expense base in the due diligence phase of their $17.9 billion acquisition, and identified hundreds of millions of dollars of costs that could be taken out of the company. While they always planned to restructure the company, sources said that the soured economy forced them to expedite the timeframe for the cuts.

Well, I can't refute this part. Mainly because I'm not sure exactly what "refute" means, but we are cutting some expense. Like free toilet paper. I think what this means is, if you're an advertiser, and one of our salesmen come into your business, whatever you do, do NOT shake hands with him.

No charge for that advice.

I can't lie (well, I can, I suppose, but this blog is my truth-out, so I won't). We are firing some people, but it won't be as many people as you might think. In fact, after much consideration, many meetings and a session with a really, really good phrenologist, I've decided on the final criteria for termination in this difficult time:

If you drive a Pontiac Trans-Am (any year) or are a male named "Carl," you are fired as of Tuesday.

If your name is "Carl" AND you drive a Trans-Am, you will be beaten with a pool cue on your way out, and will receive no severance pay at all. The local HR Director will do the beating, so if your HR person is small, or kind of squeamish about beating people up, consider yourself one lucky bastard, Carl.

Now, many of you are probably asking yourself "why should the Carls among us bear the brunt of this economic downturn? I LIKE Carl. He helped me change my tire once, always pays a little more than his share at Chilis when we go there for someone's birthday, and after all, drives a Trans-Am! Why him?"

I'll tell you.

Because we've been in this industry for a long time, we know what we're doing, and Carl is a douche-bag.

Hogan out.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

A Holocaust?

Reading one of my pain-in-the-butt whiners today, he compared what's going on in our business with the Meryl Streep-introducing movie "Holocaust." Man, if only Tovah Feldshuh worked here. THAT would be cool. I'd give 4 of our 5 Ryan Seacrests for that!

What? You thought there was only one Ryan Seacrest? LOL!

Listen up, Kings of Comedy, there are FIVE Ryans. Did you really think one guy could do all that stuff? Host American Idle, be the next Dick Clark (who, Ryan gives weekly blood transfusions to, keeping the Dickster alive, by the way), do AT40, a radio show on KIIS-FM and syndicate a show to little towns like East Christ-It's-Cold-Here, North Dakota?

There are 5, Clive. 5 smiling, messy hair, boyish grin robo-talent scoop of goodness Ryans. We call them Ryan 1, Ryan 2, Ryan 3, Ryan 4 and (for some odd reason) Ryan Q. The one on American Idle is Ryan 3, who is actually the tallest, but also the gassiest, and that's one of the reason he and Simon don't get along. Paula was dating Ryans 2 and Q for awhile, but that kind of petered out.

Anyway, back to the "Holocaust" thing. Look, I'm not sure why Jerry picked THAT particular Meryl Streep vehicle to describe radio. I think a more appropriate comparison would be "The French Lieutenants Woman," "Kramer vs. Kramer" or better yet, "Falling in Love," because I really like Bob De Niro, especially when he's in one of his meatier roles, like Boris Badinoff in "Rocky and Bullwinkle."

But "Holocaust?" Nah. We're a funny company, and that's not a funny movie. It's all about men wearing hats, lots of boots, and talking with a funny accent that isn't at all like Texas.

"Falling in Love." That's what we're all about. Yep.