February 2008 issue
Happy Valentine's Day
Once in a while I run into an occasional major market or national gig that pays well and is also fun to do. One such recent job was with Garmin... the people whose GPS maps grace the dashboards and windshields of hundeds of cars on the road today.
But the commercials I did were for a division of Garmin I didn't know about... boating accessories! GPS navigation for water craft, fish-finders, weather radar, sonar, ship to ship networks, and more. You might catch one of the commercials on one of the sports channels during a bass-fishing tourney.
X5-1 ... LTD-0
Irene and I were rear-ended the other night by a kid in an ancient Ford LTD... a real mechanical behemoth! Our BMW X5 got scratched up and dinged a bit but nothing major. I really felt sorry for the kid... The LTD (his mom's) was a total loss! It's entire front end covered two lanes. The kid had insurance but no license and was on probation! If it wasn't for bad luck, the kid wouldn't have any luck at all!
Voter's Aid OnLine
Here we go again... Another presidential election year. And this one is shaping up to be a doozey! It's so much work trying to figure out what the candidates actually believe from their carefully ambiguous campaign rhetoric.
Well, leave it to someone on the internet to come up with a way to help... it's a "candidate calculator"!
The web site is VaJoe.com (no, I'm not involved!) and at the top right of the main page you'll find a link to the candidate calculator. It asks you a series of "yes/no/undecided" questions that can also be ranked according to their importance to you. It then compares your views with US politicians all over the country, as well as the presidential candidates, and gives you immediate results. Not meant to be taken as gospel, but fun to play with!
According to VaJoe, my ideal candidate is some obscure former governor of Alaska!
you enjoy these "Punch-ins", remember you can view old newsletters
on my web
Same Old, Same Old...
Many of those who read my monthly "Punch-Ins" are, like myself, survivors of the Lincoln Financial Group, formerly Jefferson Plot Broadcasting's radio and TV stations in Richmond, VA, Charlotte, NC, and Charleston, SC.And most of you may know that the chain was sold in November to RayCom for $538 million. In cases like this, employees start feeling very insecure. And the axe has already begun to swing .
One of the more personable news anchors at Charlotte's WBTV was just booted. Lenise Ligon was escorted out the door without notice, being told that the station was "moving in a new direction." She didn't even get a chance to say goodbye to her coworkers.
WCSC in Charleston also dropped their off-camera news and promotions voice of more than ten years with the explanation that they were "moving in a new direction." That would be me!
I've figured out what the new direction is. For many of those who've worked at these stations for many ears, the direction is out.
Not Just Another Video!
I do a lot of industrial video narration, most of which is either sales presentations or employee orientations. But I am currently involved in something that is much bigger and more serious than anything I can recall in my decades of voiceover work. It is an international safety training video for OTR tire service technicians that will be used worldwide.
The effort originated in Australia, but encompasses virtually the entire industrialized world. It will eventually be translated into many different languages, and distributed everywhere there are off-the-road industrial machines such as earthmovers, tractors, graders, skidders, etc. The mortality rate is horrible among these workers who are often put on the job with little training, partnered with a veteran who most likely taught himself how to change a giant tire on a big rig, and has simply been very lucky to have not been hurt.
Dealing with hundreds of pounds of air pressure, powerful hydraulics, and massive weight is a deadly job. Even a conventional truck tire from an 18-wheeler, if exploded, has enough energy to send a 16 pound bowling ball three quarters of a mile away! A falling earthmover tire may weigh more than five tons! A rupturing hydraulic hose could cut a man in half before he can blink.
This time, the words I read, if I read them well enough to make their point, will save thousands of lives and millions of dollars in damage all over the planet. I am honored to have been selected to do this job, but I am also humbled by the need to do it well enough to make a difference. And I will also make sure my AAA membership NEVER runs out!