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Psssstt! Some Thanksgiving Leftovers

Some leftovers after the long Thanksgiving holiday weekend:

I’m wondering how many things were thrown at TV sets across Western New York when CBS analyst Rich Gannon praised Buffalo Bills Coach Chan Gailey’s play-calling during the Bills’ 20-13 loss to Indianapolis Sunday afternoon.

Gannon was often as infuriating as Gailey’s play-calling because of what he said and what he didn’t say.

Maybe John Murphy, the voice of the Bills, should watch a replay of this game and reconsider his praise of Gannon earlier this season as one of the best analysts on TV.

While Twitter was all over Gailey’s play-calling before the first half when he chose to throw two passes rather than run out the clock, Gannon was silent. The coach’s decision cost the Bills three points as the Colts drove down for a field goal with the 30 seconds or so remaining in the half.

Gannon also had little to say about Gailey’s decision to punt on the Colts’ 34-yard line rather than try a 51-yard field goal or go for it as many fans suggested on Twitter.

Then there were Gannon’s opinion of Colt fumbles. He thought the ball was out on one occasion before deciding it wasn’t. Well, he covered both angles.

I stopped counting Gannon’s infuriating moments after the Bills fell behind, 13-6, and the analyst praised Gailey’s play-calling.

Marv Albert, Gannon’s play-by-play partner, has been slipping in recent seasons and Sunday’s game was no different. He had his share of misidentifications, suggesting he needs a different spotter. He also seemed to see penalties and other things well after viewers could see them and didn’t say what yard-line the ball was on at key times.

Known for his sense of humor, Albert did provide viewers with one unintentional laugh. He said the Bills’ Mario Williams was just credited a third sack with just over two minutes left in the game. The Bills and WGR radio had reported via Twitter that Williams had three sacks about 20-30 minutes earlier than CBS did.

I don’t think there is anything more boring than watching a TV report on Black Friday or reading about it the next day in the Buffalo News.

Psssstt! Speaking of The News, it is running promos at the bottom of sections that note that “over 57,000 people have already registered for BuffaloNews.com digital access.”

I’m not sure if that is 57,000 people who didn’t subscribe to the printed paper before The News began charging for digital access or if the 57,000 consists primarily of previous subscribers. If it is new readers, it is very impressive and a big bonus to the bottom line. If it includes old subscribers, not so much. After all, you would hope that every subscriber to the printed paper would want digital access since it doesn’t cost them anything.

Anderson Cooper

I am somewhat amused that the great majority of the Pssstt! promos feature relatively young women, as do most of the ads in the newspaper’s ad campaign. When I was at The News, the paper had a policy of putting a woman’s photo on the front page because women were the toughest demographic to get to read the paper.  It would be nice if the ad campaign had more balance and featured more older male readers who read the paper (especially sports) in greater numbers than the pretty young women in the ad campaign.

Pssstt! Channel 2’s new 4:30 a.m. news gets around the same rating as its “10 at 10 “newscast on WNYO during the November sweeps. The 1.7 rating isn’t much. Channel 2 has to be more pleased with the 4:30 a.m. rating than the 10 p.m. rating.

My primary memory of the late Larry Hagman — who died Friday — concerns how cordial he was with TV critics. How cordial you ask? The man who made J.R. Ewing such an indelible character actually opened his Southern California house on the Pacific Ocean to TV critics for a party during his “Dallas” days. He also was consistently one of the best interviews during the press tour, primarily because he had such a sharp wit and never took himself too seriously.  

Though Anderson Cooper’s syndicated talk show has been canceled, it didn’t do that poorly on WIVB-TV. It actually experienced a local ratings bump in its second season. However, it probably was because Ricki Lake’s new syndicated talk show carried by Channel 7 is tanking opposite Cooper’s show here.

It was unfortunate that more of the University at Buffalo’s football games early in the season were carried on television that the games in it its late season, three-game winning streak led by Williamsville South graduate Joe Licata at quarterback. Licata pretty much saved Coach Jeff Quinn’s job, which made me wonder even more why no one seemed to question how long it took for Quinn to make Licata his starting quarterback. I’m wondering why no sportswriter or sportscaster wondered if UB would have won a few more games if Licata had started earlier.

Psssstt. Finally, there was some controversy over the holidays in the Pergament household over my frequent references to “my companion” in this blog. One of my sons — a big “Seinfeld” fan – told me over dinner at Chef’s that he thought using “my companion” suggested that I am gay (his friends agreed with him.) As Jerry would add, “not that there is anything wrong with that.” But my son thought it was dishonest and made me appear to be something I am not. I laughed and said I didn’t care what anyone thought. But the same night my best friend piled on by saying over the phone “you should stop referring to your companion. You sound gay.” So for now on, she will be referred to as my girlfriend.


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4 responses to "Psssstt! Some Thanksgiving Leftovers"

  1. Steve says:

    What’s his name? Your girlfriend that is? I couldn’t resist!

  2. grr says:

    I always took ‘the companion’ as a facetious take on Janice Okun’s reviews…that is where I remember it always being used.

  3. Rob says:

    Your son is right and I always thought the same thing about Okun when she used the same reference.

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