Back of the Book — January 18, 2014

It's Thursday morning, January 23, 2014, 02:28, and I've updated this Web page with the saga of why we were late getting on the air for the program. The original top of this page follows the arrow. ⇒ Another cold, Winter night, but not nearly as cold as it was for the last radio program. Yes, Pickles of the North and I are celebrating our eighth wedding anniversary today. We'll talk about that, try to get through the mail backlog, and bring up another topic or two during the course of this radio program. I'll do my best to get this Web page updated over the next fortnight.

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 WBAI LSB meeting should be held on Wednesday, February 12, 2014, at 7:00 PM at a location to be announced.

The WBAI LSB met last on Wednesday, January 8, 2014, at 7:00 PM at Alwan-for-the-arts, 16 Beaver Street, 4th floor, in downtown Manhattan.

This meeting was mostly about elections. Here's a written Treasurer's Report I had posted for the meeting.

Here are the Officers elected for 2014

This Brinkley person is a faction operative. The vote was tied at 10 to 10. Brinkley won the coin toss. His campaign speech for the office of Chair of the WBAI LSB consisted of saying he didn't understand Robert's Rules of Order, which is what we're required by law to use to run the meetings. He's already shown that he really doesn't understand a meeting run by rules, or how to be fair. At this meeting he was questioning people's motivations for what they'd said. This is strictly forbidden for anyone, and especially the chair of the meeting. Well, we'll see how this all goes.

The other three officers are not faction operatives. I got reelected Treasurer.

After the LSB meeting we had a Delegates' Assembly to elect Directors to the Pacifica National Board, where the real power lies in Pacifica.

These are the WBAI Directors elected for 2014

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 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.

WBAI has put up a stream for the Apple iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch. 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! Just go here and you'll be able to listen to this program any time for the next couple of months. You may need to scroll up one line to see the audio archive. Let me know if you find this feature useful. There is also another version of the archive here.

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!

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.

drunk laying on the subway platform
The Drunk Layed Out on the Platform

Listeners who tuned into this program at the top of the hour heard Simon Loekle filling in with some jazz music because Simon was the only one there. Pickles of the North and I didn't get on the air until a few minutes after the hour.

We got on the air late due to an incident which occurred at the Borough Hall IRT station in Brooklyn as we traveled in to do the program.

We were rattling along as usual on the train when we stopped at Borough Hall, the doors opened, there was a lot of shouting outside. We wondered if there was a fight going on or something. The doors closed and we figured that was it, that we'd now start the long ride to Clark St., the last IRT stop in Brooklyn, after which we'd cross under the East River to begin the trip up almost all of Manhattan as the #2 local. But then the doors opened again. We could hear a bunch of folks still yelling down the platform.

The Conductor got out of her cab, walked out the door, and down the platform toward where the yelling was coming from. At that point we knew we were in for at least a bit of a delay.

After a short while I decided to risk taking a look. You never know with things like this. Taking a look could put your head right where a stray bullet is about to claim the right-of-way as a result of the social interactions down the platform.

What I saw was a guy laying face up on the platform, with his head on the sill of the door to the train. I wondered if the Conductor had caught his head in the doors when she'd first closed them? Anyway, a bunch of young people and the conductor were standing around this guy. He was motionless. A couple of adults joined the group. Everyone milled around. After a bit the Conductor came back and announced over the intercom that there was an incident and that police and EMTs had been called. She said that there would be a delay, and that the MTA apologized for the inconvenience.

She then said that if we wanted to get moving right away we could go find our way to the #4 train elsewhere in the multi-level caverns of the Borough Hall Station and take that into Manhattan. Of course that was of no use to us, we needed west side trains. And the entire west side IRT would be delayed by this incident. The train we were on would be the train we'd be hoping to switch to if we went to a #4. So we waited.

Eventually cops and an EMT arrived. With the passage of time and all this attention the guy laying on the platform was suddenly awake enough to move a little bit, and the cops and EMT talked to him for a while. A cop finally asked him if he could walk over to a nearby bench and sit down. He could and he did. At this the Conductor closed the doors and we finally left.

Whether this guy was drunk and had passed out from too much booze, or whether someone had hit him or if there was some other reason he'd passed out like that we'll never know. I strongly believe that he was just another of the legion of drunks we always see on our way in to do this radio program very early on a Saturday morning, which translates to really late on a Friday night for most people who are out at that hour. The incident delayed our train by 15 or 20 minutes, which meant that we'd missed our connection to the #1 train that we take to CCNY. Well, we got to the studios as fast as we could after that.

Thanks to Simon Loekle for filling in as we rushed to the CCNY studios.

Almost the entire wedding party
R. Paul and Pickles of the North, With Wedding Party — January 18, 2006

Today is Pickles of the North's and my eighth wedding anniversary. Here's one of our Wedding photograph, taken by Jim Freund.

It was a very rainy day, January 18, 2006, which is supposed to portend something good about the marriage. I suppose that it was something invented to console brides who'd gotten all gussied up and then had it rain on the raiment they'd worked so hard on, or spent a lot of money on.

With us it wasn't that big a deal. We got married in the old Municipal Building in lower Manhattan.

Pickles and I have actually been together for 17 years. For me the relationship itself is more important than the legal sanction. However, it is very good to have us be able to claim to be together and have the full legal backing of the law behind our claim. This, of course, is what the current campaign around same gender marriage is all about.

Yeah, we'll talk a bit about this tonight.

mail! (23K)

We have fallen too far behind on our mail, so we plan to read some on the air tonight and continue catching up with it.

You can always send us some E-mail.

st_nicks_park_20140104 (39K)
Winter Wonderland

After the last program we lurched out into the really cold morning and I couldn't resist taking this shot of St. Nicholas Park from the top of the staircase there.

We could see where kids had been sliding on the steep hill there on makeshift toboggans made of disassemble cardboard boxes.

And it was cold out there, someplace in the middle single digits at the time this photograph was taken, which was actually warmer than it had been on our trek up the hill to the WBAI Studios at CCNY in the pre-dawn hours. Oh, I didn't take a whole lot of photographs, my hands were really cold holding the camera.

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.

We like to stay interactive with our listeners. Here are the various options for you to get in touch with us.

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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The contents of this Web page are copyright © 2014, R. Paul Martin.