Back of the Book — August 17, 2013

It's Tuesday morning, September 17, 2013, 05:14, and because the stream crashed during the first half of this program, and the archive of this program is fragmented, and some of it isn't on the server anymore, I have posted a full archive of the program which I link to below. Previously I'd added the segment about the cricket we recorded during our recent trip to Coney Island. We did get to a bunch of the mail on this program. The original top of this page follows the arrow. ⇒ We are doing a two hour radio program this time! We'll talk about that on this program too. We also plan to talk about the current upheaval at WBAI. We will talk about various other things while we're at it and get to the below topics as best we can. We will also dive into our mailbag and get some of that done too. We might even get all caught up with our mail at last. We are in the process of updating this Web page.

Did you know that I've got a brief synopsis of some of the WBAI LSB meetings? Well, I do, and I've recently updated some of that.

I have also posted a whole lot of the minutes of the Pacifica National Finance Committee. I'm a member of that committee because I'm the WBAI LSB Treasurer.

The next regular WBAI LSB meeting is scheduled to happen on Wednesday, September 11, 2013, at 7:00 PM at Alwan-for-the-arts, 16 Beaver Street, 4th floor, in downtown Manhattan.

The WBAI LSB met on Wednesday, August 14, 2013, at Alwan-for-the-arts, 16 Beaver Street, 4th floor, in downtown Manhattan.

We didn't get to a Treasurer's Report at this meeting but I had posted a written Treasurer's Report the night before.

The LSB mostly heard reports from the General Manager and interim Program Director on the state of some things, and then LSB went into executive session for a while. The faction tried to shove one of their long motions that the rest of us didn't get to look at before it was put on the floor. This time they were stopped. It's a trick they use all the time, giving people mere minutes to try and digest some multi-page motion that they've worked on for weeks. The official report out of that executive session is that, “The WBAI LSB met in executive session to discuss personnel issues.”

At a previous meeting the WBAI LSB voted to hold its meetings on the second Wednesday of every month and/or the last Thursday of that month, subject to change by the LSB, which gives us the following schedule:

All of these meetings are set to begin at 7:00 PM.

WBAI has a program schedule up on its newly revamped Web site. The site has gotten many of the individual program pages together to provide links and such, so check it out.

Because WBAI was forced out of its studios by the flood waters' destruction of the building's electrical system we still have this alternate, temporary stream for the radio station! I do not know how long this emergency stream will be up for. If this stream isn't working let me know.

New WBAI stream! WBAI has put up an experimental stream for the Apple iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch. This is a brand new, experimental stream. So if you have one of those devices you might try the link out. And let us know how it works for you one way or the other. That way the folks implementing it can iron out any kinks in the system.

WBAI is archiving the programs! UPDATE for this program only: The audio stream crashed 48 minutes into this program. The archive got fragmented by this. Also, the official archive of the second hour was scheduled to stay up for only a couple of weeks on the WBAI Web site. I have posted a full archive of this two hour program at this link. This is the only complete archive of this program because the second hour has scrolled off the WBAI server.

If you want to listen to any part of the WBAI archive click here to go right to the archives. When you first go to the Web page you'll only see the WBAI programs for the past 7 days. If you want to see older programs you can click on one of the “See ALL Shows” buttons. Or to see only the two shows in this time slot click here.

Back of the Book is one of the programs that you can download, as well as listen to on line.

In the table on the archive Web page Back of the Book and Saturday Morning With the Radio On are both in the “Show” column. The “Date and Category” column shows the date of the program. After the program I go in and write the details of the program and say which program it is. Of course I'd recommend that you just listen to both programs in this time slot!

In the Summer of 2009, there was a Pacifica National Board meeting held in New York. Here's the Web page I did about this PNB meeting and the amazing things that went on at it.

And the PNB has also met in Houston from Friday October 9th, through Sunday October 11th, 2009. The official audio archive of that meeting is here. It was not disrupted as the New York meeting was, although some of the same miscreants got out there to say stupid things.

The Pacifica National Board (PNB) met in Manhattan the weekend of October 1-3, 2010. The audio has been posted for the first day of the meeting, the second day of the meeting and the third day of the meeting.

We'll be talking about the layoffs that have happened and the program changes that have occurred and will be coming on this program. We don't have any special knowledge of the future program changes, but we can talk about what we do know. Many of the callers to the Report to the Listener that aired on August 9, were totally uninformed about WBAI's serious financial problems. I think that the listeners to Back of the Book must be a lot more knowledgable about all of this than the average WBAI daytime listener.

The crack where the cricket was
The cricket was in this crack

Below is an excerpt of the cricket sound I recorded.

So on this program we talked a tiny bit about our Coney Island trip on August 15. It was good to get down there the day after the LSB meeting.

Toward the end of our little day trip to Coney Island we were sitting on a bench near the western end of the Boardwalk when we heard a cricket chirping. I wanted to record the sound of the cricket but we couldn't figure out where the sound was coming from. At first I'd thought that the cricket was in the thin line of foliage crowded against the north side of the Boardwalk. Pickles thought the cricket was in one of the tiny tufts of grass growing against the beach side of the Boardwalk. We could hear the sound but we couldn't figure out where it was coming from.

After we sat on a bench for a while listening to the cricket I got up and started hunting it down. After a while I found that the sound of the cricket was coming from a crack in the concrete Boardwalk!

There is a move to concretize the entire Coney Island Boardwalk. This program has already been carried out at the eastern and western ends of the Boardwalk. It was considered a big compromise to allow the part of the Boardwalk around the amusement area to keep actual wooden boards as the surface that you walk on. The concrete has been decaying since soon after they poured it. Here we found an instance of the local wildlife taking up residence in one of the cracks.

So I stooped down and held my little digital sound recorder close to the crack and recorded some cricket sounds.

It was getting late, the Sun had just set and that part of the Boardwalk was becoming popular. All sorts of people were congregating, running, biking and talking loudly down there. You could hear some of that in the audio that I played on the air. Yeah, urban crickets often don't get to sing their Summer songs solo. The audio excerpt on this page is pretty much pure cricket.

Twitter logo
The Twitter Logo

So I finally joined Twitter. I did it last Sunday night.

Pacifica has been pushing all producers to join both Twitter and Facebook. I think that Twitter is the lesser of two evils. I will, however, look into seeing if I can get a Facebook page without having to become one of the suckers that's making Mark Zuckerberg a billionaire by lavishing their personal details on his site so that he can sell their information for even more money.

So far, it really looks like a big waste of time. If anyone wants to “follow” me on Twitter you can click on this little graphic and do so  . But remember, I warned you about wasting time on it.

If you do decide to “follow” me I will try to avoid doing too much of the stuff I see up there where people think that every little thing they do is worthy of pointing out to people. Maybe I just don't crave attention enough to rally fit in with this Twitter thing. I do not feel bad about that.

Ouch! R. Paul gets bitten.
Now That is a Bite!

How did R. Paul get bitten and where did it happen? We'll try to get to that stirring topic on this program. At least you can tell when it happened.

There are a lot of issues that are considered hazardous to talk about on the air at WBAI, even though the gag rule was lifted in 2002. However, there is the Internet! There are mailing lists which you can subscribe to and Web based message boards devoted to WBAI and Pacifica issues. Many controversial WBAI/Pacifica issues are discussed on these lists.

One popular list the “NewPacifica” mailing list. Founded October 31, 2000, this list is sometimes lively and as of mid-2011, has 687 subscribers coast to coast.

Being lively, of course, it sometimes also gets a bit nasty. All sorts of things are happening on this list and official announcements are frequently posted there.

You can look at the NewPacifica list here, and you can join the list from that Web page too. If you subscribe to the “NewPacifica” mailing list you will receive, via E-mail, all of the messages which are sent to that list.

There is the option to receive a “digest” version of the list, which means that a bunch of messages are bundled into one E-mail and sent to you at regular intervals, this cuts down on the number of E-mails you get from the list. You will also be able to send messages to the list.

This list also has a Web based interface where you can read messages and from which you can post your own messages.

There is also the more WBAI specific “Goodlight” Web based message board. It is sometimes referred to on Back of the Book as “the bleepin' blue board,” owing to the blue background used on its Web pages. This one has many people posting anonymously and there's also an ancillary “WBAI people” board that's just totally out of hand. UPDATE: The bleepin' blue board has had to add a step for folks to get onto it because it's under attack by spambots. When you click on the above link you may be asked for a username and password. Type in Username: poster Password: enternow

When the computer in Master Control is working we sometimes have live interaction with people posting on the “Goodlight Board” during the program.

Our very own Uncle Sidney Smith, whose program Saturday Morning With the Radio On alternates with us, has a blog these days. You can reach his blog here.

My voice mail number at WBAI is no longer functional. This is probably a permanent situation. It was nice while it lasted.

You can also send me E-mail.

And now you can even reach me on Twitter Twitter logo

WBAI related links

WBAI Listeners' Web page

WBAI Management's official Web site

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Back to my home page.

The contents of this Web page are copyright © 2013, R. Paul Martin.