Wednesday, July 29, 2015

The Square Peg - Broken News

Broken News
Copyright S. Bradley Stoner

The morning news show never ceases to amuse me... that's right, amuse, not amaze. I don't find anything amazing on the news shows anymore, but they are definitely a source of amusement. I particularly get a kick out of the Breaking News, the Weather, and, lest we forget, the On-time Traffic Report. But I can't help but wonder, who broke the news? Somebody had to... it wasn't like this during the Huntley-Brinkley and Cronkite years.

Take this morning. The Breaking News was that Omar whatever his name is, the reputed head of the Taliban and one of the most hunted men in the world, has apparently been dead... for two years. TWO YEARS! Bet that came as a big surprise to the CIA, DoD, and Homeland Defense. Oh wait... it probably did because it wasn't a Seal Team or Drone that got him... it was tuberculosis. Teach him to take up residence in a third world country with no universal healthcare plan. The Local Breaking News was that another "possibly gang-related" shooting happened on the south side. This isn't breaking news... this is routine on the south side. And the interviews they have with the neighbors and relatives. "He was a quiet guy... kept to himself and didn't bother nobody..." the neighbor said. Except, maybe, for the rival gang members. "He was such a good boy... loved everybody, and he didn't run with any gangs... I don't know how this could have happened," says a cousin. Then they show a mug shot of the victim from his last arrest... and there are all those tell-tale gang tattoos. Yeah, he was a "good boy."

The Weather also cracks me up. Every now and then one of the "meteorologists" slips in a comment about "climate change." We know he's talking about man-caused global warming, but since that has been attacked by scientists who know better, they have adopted the more PC term. They tell you that this is the "warmest year on record." Really? Not in Texas it's not. Here it is almost August and we have yet to see 100 degrees. Holy crap... we had 59 days of 100 + a few years ago and 49 in 2011. We almost had Stage 3 water restrictions last year because the aquifer was so low and the lakes were drying up, not so much because of the heat... but lack of rain. Then it started raining in December and it didn't quit until late June. The aquifer filled up, the lakes came back... Texans were happy. And if you've lived long enough you know what it is... a CYCLE... not the kind you ride, the kind that means there is a rhythm and rhyme to the weather. The breaking news today should have been the weather... we have a 30% chance of rain on Friday. YAY!

On-time Traffic remains my favorite part of the morning news, though. It's the only thing I pay close attention to, primarily because my lovely travels through one of the most congested intersections in the city... 281 and Loop 1604. She doesn't have that far to go, but a single idiot-caused wreck there can back up traffic for a loooong time. The other reason that I pay close attention to this segment is the traffic reporter. She is stunning, but I don't think they provide her with a teleprompter. For example, this morning, pointing at the scene from the sky copter (it was on the green screen, I'm sure, and that probably accounted for diverted attention if they did have a working teleprompter), she said, "And here you can see just how overturned that car is." Wait... wha...?  There are degrees of "overturned?" I don't think so... it either is or it isn't. It could be rolled on it's side, but if it is turned upside down and on its roof... it is overturned. Completely. But I'll forgive her... she has a nice smile.

So, until tomorrow, y'all have a wonderful day.