BL: 2018: A Rough Year For “Voices Of”

    Microphone
    BobLee
    March09/ 2018

    2018: A Rough Year for “Voices Of ….”

    Dick Enberg… Keith Jackson… Woody Durham … and its only mid-March. OK, Dick Enberg died December 21, but that’s close enough to qualify.

    If you are/were a venerable sports “Voice Of” and you have a nagging cough or a frustrating hitch in your get-along you might oughta get that checked… and/or don’t be buying green bananas. Charon The Boatman on the River Styx might be saving a seat for you.

    Blondie’s family have this ongoing on-line game we play based on celebrities always “dying-in-threes”. Someone of obvious or marginal “celebrity” status will die and one of us will send a group text message notifying the rest of us that So & So had died and “does he/she count?”… beginning or adding to a new “group of three”.

    We call it The Ghoul Pool and have coffee mugs that say that.

    The whole concept of celebrities die in threes is dependent on two key factors… (1) WHO qualifies as a celebrity, and (2) HOW LONG does the clock tick for “they all died together” over a period of days… week… ??

    If, for instance, Billy Graham starts a new group… and Woody Durham is now the second member of that group… how quickly must a 3rd celebrity be added to announce… “See, they always die in groups of three”. Should there be a time window that closes on completing a group?

    Does David Ogden Styers (a M*A*S*H cast member) “count” and did he end an ongoing trio or start a new trio that Dr. Graham and Woody have now completed?

    What follows is always an interesting peek into the minds of millennials versus baby boomers. As well as those who follow sports versus TV/movies versus “The Arts” versus politics.

    I have not submitted Woody’s name to the group but I can tell you, he likely will NOT qualify. Blondie and I are the only Ghoul Pool members on this side of The Mighty Mississippi. Woody may have been a household word from Murphy To Manteo and certainly within The County of Orange… his reknown, alas, did not extend too many latitudes / longitudes beyond Yea Olde North State… as that one ill-mannered Syracuse fan reminded us.

    I’m not even sure Dick Enberg was unanimous. Before any of you get your fruit-of-the-looms in a wad about “Woody” I haveDuke Snider to tell you that Duke Snider did not qualify back in 2011. The kerfluffle that caused still reverberates whenever a marginal candidate is nominated.

    When famous (??) chick-writer Nora Efron was nominated in 2012, I invoked “the Duke Snider Rule” that Ms Efron was never part of a Dream Outfield of The 50s in NYC of Mantle… Mays… The Duke.

    I finally gave in figuring anyone married to Carl Bernstein for four years deserved a break. I keep Duke close at hand as needed.

    As of today no “famous rapper” has been formally nominated despite various ones being gunned down periodically.

    One of our unwritten rules is “if you have to explain WHO the freshly deceased is” then they likely are not famous enough. I would definitely have to do that with Woody. David Ogden Styers, oddly, did qualify.

    It is a tribute to the intellectual prowess of our group that Dr. Graham was a unanimous first-ballot selection. That our group contains no angry obscene militant homosexuals pretty much assured that.

    Our most notable “threshold candidate” was ZsaZsa Gabor. “Zsa” was formally toe-tagged in Dec 2016 with only five toes available for tagging. She had lost a leg to some vascular disorder several years prior and became a bit like SNL’s infamous General Francisco Franco for whom there were weekly updates of his mortality status.

    .

    I had several interactions with Woody in the early years of this millennium. Alas, as my well-documented estrangement from “over yonder” got more and more estranged our casual friendship dissolved. Publicly acknowledging my friendship with “Damn Dan” (Kane) kinda decluttered my Contacts with many 27514 zip coders… DUH!

    N&O “big wig” John Drescher and I were chatting this week and he asked me to run something by “my buddy Art” Chansky. I told JD since I publicly aligned with “Damn Dan” me and Art ain’t been too cozy.  John, if anyone, should understand.

    Epic Scandals make strange bedfellows.

    Woody Durham

    My favorite Woody Story took place around 2003-2004…. It was on a TruBlue monkey board. The rabid loonies were discussing how much they hated Dick Vitale, Billy Packer, Duke’s Bob Harris… etc etc.   Board monkey discussions always involve “hating” someone – ADs, refs, commissioners, me… or something.  It’s part of their “charm”.

    NOTE: As I once said about the late Don Shea… anyone who hates Bob Harris has A LOT of other personal issues. Bob Harris is one of THE ALL TIME “NICE GUYS” in “the business” or otherwise.

    Remember that time Hansbrough was sucker-punched in the nose with a sledge hammer by that Duke “thug”.  Henderson??  If you ever get the chance, listen to how Woody – Bob Harris – & Billy Packer all three described it as they each saw it.  LOLLLLL!

    Anyway… the TruBlue monkeys were doing what board monkeys do when one she-monkey remarked…

    “I always listen to Woody because you can always trust Woody to tell it like it is…”. YIKES!

    I related that to Woody over lunch at Chapel Hill Country Club. He almost choked on his Cobb Salad. I recall his answer as being “… well…I always told it like I wanted it to be…”.

    Every “Voice Of…” Is “A Homer”. It is always “us” and “we” and “our boys” versus the quite “evil them”.

    Woody Durham was as impartial as NC State’s Frank Weedon… let’s leave it at that.

    My last Woody story was told to me by a longtime colleague of his a few years ago. Whenever Woody went out in public… a Sharpiewedding, a funeral, dinner with his family, to get a haircut, any time he was out/about in Chapel Hill he ALWAYS carried “a fresh Sharpie”.

    … “My fans are always wanting my autograph and they don’t have a pen. I hate to disappoint them.”

    As word of Woody Durham’s passing circled the globe on Wednesday… I wondered if a family member / close friend will slip ” a fresh Sharpie” in his coat pocket for his final journey. I hope so.

    .

    ######

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    BobLee
    • NCSU68Grad Reply
      7 months ago

      https://www.google.com/search?client=safari&hl=en-us&ei=tqCmWq_UKsHSjwSQhY7gDg&q=maxine+waters+hat+images&oq=maxine+waters+hat+images&gs_l=mobile-gws-serp.12…11175.12608..14258…0….138.506.0j4……….1..mobile-gws-wiz-serp…….35i39j30i10.ll9FQpE5cDI%3D#imgrc=uCG4Jc–3SITmM:

      Wear a hat one time and you get mistaken for Sheila. I do apologize for not being able to properly recognize these folks by their attire….the do NOT all look alike….

      I’m waiting for Shelia or Maxine or both to don a black beret and jump on the BLM DECLARES NRA A TERRORIST ORGANIZATION band wagon. OMG, if they BOTH wear the same chapeau, how we ever gonna know which is which….

    • Doug Reply
      7 months ago

      Can’t reply either. The team here is considering sending a letter of dissociation. You know how serious that is. 🤓

      • BobLee Reply
        7 months ago

        I have my crackerjack tech spec ops guys working on it… “getting a bigger hammer”.

    • NCSU68Grad Reply
      7 months ago

      iPad not happy with format and will not respond to REPLY.
      .
      In response to bringing in Maxine…..she is introducing a bill today that has reparations based on a complex formula that the government will pay more for than the actual benefit. Any AFAM athlete will receive double the normal benefits….regardless of whether the student hails from the USA or some country that used to be. DACA’s get a variable rate depending on Trump’s polling data. Native Americans must pledge allegiance to Pocahontas Warren before applications will eve be accepted. #MeToo, regardless of gender identity, will get a spin on the Wheel of Fortune for added amounts.
      .
      No word on whether wearing a Maxine HAT will impact final benefit

      • BobLee Reply
        7 months ago

        Correction… “hat jokes” usually refer to Houston’s own Sheila Jackson-Lee. “Auntie Maxine” is usually Fred Sanford’s “Aunt Esther”. I am working on a theory that Maxine could not possibly be as stoopid as she appears. She exaggerates her absurdity to better relate to her constituents in South Central.
        .
        I am having issues with REPLY too.

    • Keeta Reply
      7 months ago

      Felton was charged with trespassing, he was caught in a classroom

      • BobLee Reply
        7 months ago

        Can we work Maxine Waters in there somewhere? …. 🤣

    • Tin foil tar heel Reply
      7 months ago

      Woody was a Homer, but he was our Homer. And he was legitimately great calling hoops, football not so much. I still feel cheated though I did not get the privilege of hearing Bill Currie back in the day. The “exciting as watching artificial insemination” blast used to describe the 12-10 State-Dook game in 1968 still might be the greatest line of all time.

    • Baltimoreheel Reply
      7 months ago

      I used to do a Beach Music show on Sunday afternoons at CHL AM radio in the mid 80s. Of course Woody worked out of CHL and I had the good fortune to interact with him on occasion. As a kid in Thomasville NC I watched Woody as the sports anchor for the Greensboro CBS affiliate and then I was a pseudo colleague with the “Voice of the Tarheels! The conversations we had were priceless for me. I have and always will miss him and his voice on the Tarheel Sports Network.

      • BobLee Reply
        7 months ago

        It is a unique position to impact many lives. His 40+ years alone are an achievement. There have been a dozen or so “Woodys” at schools around the country equally beloved.

    • fayettwuf Reply
      7 months ago

      Woody was fun to listen to. He was unabashedly biased. You could tune in an know who was ahead by listening to him for a minute without hearing the score. By all accounts he was a great guy. His son Wes seems like a credit to his memory. Another part of ACC history is gone. My favorite memory of his broadcasting was when he noted the UNC crowd was booing the offense and excitedly said that the coach had replaced the whole offense, then his sidekick in sotto voce pointed out it was the punting team coming.

      • BobLee Reply
        7 months ago

        When Spurrier came into Kenan about 8-9 years ago with SoCar… Woody totally lost it about “those SEC officials”. I heard they had to use a tranquilizer dart.

    • AgentPierce Reply
      7 months ago

      Wasn’t that the event you two had to leave early when some jackass yelled “It’s BobLee… somebody GET A ROPE”

      • BobLee Reply
        7 months ago

        Well there was THAT one and the one up in Rapid City SD seven years ago.

    • Robedixon Reply
      7 months ago

      I had to laugh at your 27514 comment. Indeed two years ago I was asked to appear in person at a North Carolina Press Association meeting to receive a nice career award from the organization. The award was to be given right smack dab in the middle of 27514 at the Carolina Club. Now I am not a Carolina Club kinda guy, preferring Bojangles and a local hole in the wall burger joint to some put on a suit place. Any way I make my way to Chapel Hill via a back road which again I prefer to the big city four to eight lanes and arrive to have breakfast and get said plaque. When I get there several people let me know that yes some in the audience and such know my political leanings which is not Chapel Hillian for sure as you know. So I dine with a couple who are in my political sphere and accept my award and get outta there with little conversation afterwards. I expect I have spent my last minutes in Orange County before I part his earth.

      • BobLee Reply
        7 months ago

        HA! Blondie and I had a very similar experience 3-4 years ago at that same event in the same place. Blondie’s Favorite NCGA House member was receiving an award and we were her “security detail”. “Damn Dan” also got an award. The featured speaker was some goober named Charlie Rose ?? What ever happened to Creepy Ol’ Charlie ??? Bwhahaha…

    • Pirate.Guy Reply
      7 months ago

      ECU AD Jeff Compher “bought out”!

      • BobLee Reply
        7 months ago

        That eventuality was the worst kept secret since “CNN’s Brian Stelter can’t do one push-up”. He has been standing on two banana peels for several years… yet the Trustees gave him a 5-year extension last year. Do ANY Univ Trustees have functioning brains??

    • MB.CharmCity Reply
      7 months ago

      What do you hear was the final issue with Felton leaving UNC?

      • BobLee Reply
        7 months ago

        It was not parking tickets or jaywalking. My sort of reliable source says “a deal” was struck… “Just go away and we’ll all try to forget you were ever here…” – Deal.

    • 58 Wolf Kennel Reply
      7 months ago

      Morbid subject made more palatable, but not my favourite these days. Baseball is, and my son Philip and I attending today at 3:00 against BC.
      Double header Saturday afternoon.
      Want to go???
      Elaine coming home Tuesday in wheelchair. Two weeks before I can get her there. Here’s to life !!!!

      • BobLee Reply
        7 months ago

        Thanks but already have plans. … Here’s to Life Indeed!
        .
        I plan to shift my MLB.tv Baseball attention between Cards – Astros – Angels. I do NOT think there is Collusion… simply GMs/Owners rethinking longterm deals to over-30 players. Next year with so many mid-20s established stars as FAs should see MEGA-Longterm deals for 3-4.

    • Frank.I.P Reply
      7 months ago

      “Decluttering one’s Contacts from 27514-ers” is not a bad thing.

      • BobLee Reply
        7 months ago

        I never considered that it was. I have kept about a dozen or so… Quality over Quantity. My Rabid Liberal contacts are even more finely-tuned. They’re down to either 5-6… with one guy on a day-by-day basis.

    • BB.Derm Reply
      7 months ago

      This one started my day out well:
      .
      As of today no “famous rapper” has been formally nominated despite various ones being gunned down periodically.

      • BobLee Reply
        7 months ago

        We use the millennial members of our ghoulish group as our “famous rapper” experts.

    • NCSU68Grad Reply
      7 months ago

      Sadly, folks are sometimes remembered for something they should NOT have said that was a brief “brain disconnect” comment…rather than a lifetime of achievement. My only personal recollection of Woody was that when I would listen to him broadcasting, he was a little shy on giving the score….especially if UNC was not in the lead. I WOULD (dare I say this?) listen to UNC games when we were in the car….more of an ACC thingie than a UNC fetish if State were not playing. Woody was talented. I have two events that come to mind….
      ACC Tournament – 2007 – Tampa. The UNC broadcasting crew was holed up in a very narrow space. Woody and Jones and Eric were calling the games….every one of them. The UNC “producer/engineer” must have been NEW. It is common practice for the team that is playing in an ACC tourney to have their broadcast audio played on a low power FM transmitter inside the facility. How they choose WHOM to use…nary a clue. But in Tampa, UNC was always “ON THE AIR”. BUT the engineer messed up. Typically, you have the BROADCAST audio playing….so you hear all the commercials. The UNC trio’s line was the INPUT side of the audio console. Therefore, during commercial breaks, you could listen to their “Off AIR banter”. I discovered this early on and it was a HOOT. When Woody was not around, Jones and Eric were less than candid about Woody….particularly in his high tech ability to even use a calculator. That was one tournament where I wished I could have recorded the comments and published a “tell all” book….
      Next up was Woody’s “Strom Thurmond was a great and powerful Representative….said Trent Locke…” Remember how well THAT turned out. A few years (maybe 5 – 6 or so) AFTER the “KNEE” incident in Kenan, Woodie was calling a game and there was a young and upcoming back. Geno or something like that. When he made a touchdown where the point of contact of HIS knee was 0.001″ INSIDE the end zone, Woodie quipped (paraphrasing) the following….”Well, I guess that settles who is better and the folks in Albemarle know what I am talking about….”. T A McClendon was from Albemarle and eventually had some drug (possession to distribute) issues. That comment was totally uncalled for and many loyal UNC fans complained to whomever was in charge of “UNC Sports Marketing and Broadcasting”. MAYBE Woody offered an apology later on or maybe folks just wrote it off to “Well, you know….that is Woody (ORW could be used here).”
      BUT, not to judge a man by a brain slip, he was a HOMER. He was entertaining. Sad to see him go. Perhaps his death will bring some recognition to a little know disease (how many folks never heard of ALS?).
      We old time WP Fans know that Bill Jackson (BJ), Wally and Gary were legends in OUR minds. I still listen (usually every March) to Wally’s “State! State!. The Wolfpack has won the National Championship. The glass slipper fits! State…..”. This is the 35th year of such. Sadly it is the 25th year of Jimmy V.’s passing….and his Reynolds speech still brought tears to the eyes of a senior group that I played it for recently when we acknowledged “anniversaries”.

      • BobLee Reply
        7 months ago

        Voices of… bbq joints…. Bond girls …. everyone is entitled to their own “favoritiest” ….

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