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Instrumental Invasion, 12/1/21 December 2, 2021

Posted by Mike C. in Airchecks, Audio, History, Internet, Jazz, Media, Music, Personal, Photography, Radio, Technology, Travel, Video.
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The December 1 Instrumental Invasion on WCWP was recorded one hour per day on October 10 and 11.

The playlist was created and annotated on October 9 while the script was drafted before recording on the 10th.

I chose to take the next two weeks off to focus on covering WCWP’s Homecoming Weekend and then to unwind, but was pressed into service on October 21 after an additional underwriting spot at the top of each hour necessitated shortening segments to 18:30, and also picking up where I took out a liner. The first segment couldn’t be shortened.

This is the first show with a new thumbnail, after updating my profile photo on my various platforms last Saturday. I took the photo on a GoPro Hero 7 attached to a 10″ flexible tripod. I held a tripod leg with my right hand while taking the photo in an iPhone app with my left hand. It was time-consuming adapting the photo to the show banner, and then updating thumbnails for all completed shows recorded to date, but the end results were worth it, even if the image is darker without a flash.

I led off the show with “Unisphere” by The Dave Brubeck Quartet because I had purchased their Time Changes album – an ironic title, considering my later circumstance – after watching video of a live performance on Dave’s Facebook page:

The song was inspired by the steel structure that served as the theme symbol to the 1964-65 New York World’s Fair. As noted on the air, I saw the Unisphere firsthand back in July 2017:

This is the documentary I spoke of, After the Fair:

I saw The Rippingtons live at My Father’s Place in Roslyn in March 2019, the night before Open Road was released. Their set included “Tangerine Skyline.”

I made up for last week’s mistake by including “Watch Your Step” by Chris Geith in the second hour’s second segment.

Click here to download this show’s aircheck MP3 or listen below:

Turning 40! November 20, 2021

Posted by Mike C. in Bowling, Food, Personal, Photography, Sports, Travel, Video.
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As noted in this week’s Instrumental Invasion recap, I turned 40 the day the show aired. Celebration of my birthday began 11 days earlier with a late lunch with my friends Kelly and Lori and my mother Lisa at La Strada of Merrick. After pizza and pasta, I was treated to a birthday cannoli:

The following Saturday, my aunt Donna treated me to two games at AMF Wantagh Lanes, a bowling alley half a mile from my house:

Saturday afternoon bowling at Wantagh Lanes was a tradition for just over a decade of my life, most of which was in Nassau P.A.L.‘s handicap league.

Aunt Donna and I were on lane 24:

It took until late in the first game to regain my form, salvaging an 83. I bounced back with a 149 in the second game.

My ninth frame spare, via cropped vidcaps:

My first shot in the last frame:

The final scores for game 2:

Aunt Donna also shot video of three spare conversions, which I’ve compiled here along with my video:

Four spare conversions

I posed with my ball, which I’ve had for 25 years, before putting it away:

Aunt Donna then treated me to lunch at Margarita’s Cafe a few minutes to the north. We got caught in a severe thunderstorm on the way to King Kullen where I bought a pint of ice cream:

The storm contained small hail, slightly larger than sleet:

Finally came my 40th birthday on Wednesday. Here’s what greeted me in the kitchen that morning:

At one point in the day, I read Wikipedia’s entry for November 17. I was surprised how many pivotal events occurred on that day and how many notable public figures were born that day.

Dinner was at Umberto’s in Wantagh’s Cherrywood Shopping Center.

I was joined by my parents Lisa and Bill, sister Lauren, and family friends Janice and Joe, Mandy and Kevin, and Janine. This was one of my gifts:

My dinner was meat lasagna:

The staff sang “Happy Birthday” to me as they brought out my vanilla and chocolate tartufo:

I waved to the other guests and thanked them as they applauded, then let them know what milestone I was celebrating: “40!” I got more applause.

My 40th birthday concluded back at home with a Carvel ice cream cake:

Throughout the day, and all the way into this morning, I received hundreds of birthday wishes on social media. Thank you to each and every one of them. I greatly appreciate it. My 40th birthday was a rich, full day; just how a milestone birthday should be.

Working from my 30th birthday post where I said I was a tricenarian, I learned that I’m now a quadragenerian.

I’ll leave you with a simple photo I whipped up in Photoshop:

Instrumental Invasion, 10/20/21 October 21, 2021

Posted by Mike C. in Airchecks, Animation, Audio, Internet, Jazz, Media, Music, Personal, Radio, Travel, TV, Video, Weather.
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The October 20 Instrumental Invasion on WCWP was recorded from September 2 to 4: one segment on the 2nd, three on the 3rd, and two on the 4th. Pickups were recorded on the 4th and 5th.

The playlist was created on September 1 with annotations and the script draft on the 2nd.

I referred to live shows in 2016 and ’19, and to New York Comic Con in ’17. I brought up NYCC after bringing up Futurama character Hattie McDoogal after playing “Whatchacallit” by Mike Stern. That was Hattie’s original catchphrase. I like “kajigger” better. I recapped all three events on this blog:

Let’s face it: if it weren’t for The Weather Channel, I wouldn’t be into instrumentals, or meteorology, for that matter. Many songs on this show were heard during local forecasts, later known as Local on the 8s. TWCClassics.com has compiled video and audio playlists. Audio goes in alphabetical order; “the” is listed under T.

This was the second week in a row where Herbie Hancock led off the show.

“Right On Time” by Richard Elliot was a single at the time of recording, previously heard on March 24.

For the first time since last December 9, the end of the last song – “Top of the Tower” by Jay Rowe – was cut off in automation due to spot breaks running longer than 90 seconds and the first week of new underwriting. 18:40 was a safe segment duration for so long, but no more. The next six shows had to be remixed with 18:30 segments. Some segments stayed at 18:40 and others were in between.

Anyway, click here to download this show’s aircheck MP3 or listen below:

2021 LIU Post & WCWP Homecoming Weekend, WCWP’s 60th Anniversary October 19, 2021

Posted by Mike C. in Airchecks, Audio, Aviation, Football, Health, History, Internet, Interviews, Jazz, Media, Music, News, Personal, Phone, Photography, Radio, Rock, Sports, Technology, Travel, Video, Video Games, Weather.
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Other recaps: 20082009WCWP 50th Anniversary (2011)20122013201420152016, 2017, 2018, 2019

After a year away, Homecoming Weekend was back in full force! And WCWP’s 60th anniversary on Monday made it a four-day weekend!

It was my first time back on the campus of LIU Post since October 28, 2019 – a week after the last Homecoming – with Ryan Grabow.

On Thursday, October 14, I charged up my camcorder and changed batteries in the shotgun mic and audio recorder. I also charged up my GoPro Hero 7 for multi camera production, but didn’t use it.

Friday, October 15

I left for LIU Post via Uber at 10:30. Upon arrival, I gave my COVID-19 self-check form – which I filled out before I left – to the gate attendant. Then, I was driven down to WCWP in the Abrams Communication Center. I immediately went to work as Art Beltrone and Hank Neimark pre-recorded an interview in studio 1 for Monday’s 60th anniversary broadcast. The guest and recorder was Samantha “Sami J” Negron.

Here is the interview:

After that, I moved my equipment into studio 2 to record part of Art Beltrone’s solo show, WCWP’s Early Years, which kicked off the 60-hour (hey, 60 hours + 60 years!) Homecoming Weekend programming block. Jeff Kroll was the board operator and his wife Pat was producer.

Hank Neimark was Art’s first guest:

Jay Elzweig introduced the songs, all from 1961, the year WCWP signed on:

Several WCWP alumni were interviewed via Zoom:

Two of the Zoom guests were Stewart Ain…:

…and Steve Radoff:

Another show feature had Art reading Post Pioneer newspaper articles. This one was “Message to the Students from the Provost”:

Jay showed off his t-shirt:

The show closed with a preview of 4:00’s Strictly Jazz with John LiBretto and Hank Neimark:

Art also asked Jeff and Pat Kroll their thoughts:

After Art’s closing remarks, the show was over.

Here’s video of portions of WCWP’s Early Years:

Joan Yonke, LIU Post Campus Director of Employer and Alumni Engagement, dropped by the station during Early Years and came back again afterward. It’s always nice to see her.

While the pre-recorded WCWP Career Paths with Bill Mozer ran, I took some photos in the lounge area:

Here’s Homecoming Weekend coordinator Zach’s dog Diesel:

Strictly Jazz started a few minutes after 4PM due to technical difficulties, but ran without a hitch after that.

As you saw, Jeff Kroll ran the board again.

Joining John LiBretto…:

…and Hank Neimark…:

…was Rita Sands, appearing by phone.

They spoke to Jon Korkes via Zoom (after John held Jeff’s “un-mute” message up to the webcam):

They spoke to me in studio 2:

And after my dad picked up to drive me home, Ted David on Zoom:

Here is my video of the first hour:

And the scope of the entire show, just as in 2019 when it aired before mine:

10/20 UPDATE: John Zoni took over studio 2 at 6PM:

Sami J was on at 8PM with Total Access:

My friend and ardent supporter Jay Mirabile had a special edition of his DFK Show at 10PM. Here’s a photo he posted with Sami and Peter Sacoulas:

And his aircheck:

Saturday, October 16

I spent much of the morning editing media and drafting this blog post. I left for Post, this time with my dad, shortly after 1PM.

Both gates were open with no need to check in. So, when we got to campus at 1:30, I photographed the turn into the east gate:

Bernie Bernard and Adam Smook were congregating in studio 3. Adam and I are both from Wantagh – Wantagh Woods, at that! – as we discussed. We also talked about fellow alumnus Frank D’Elia, who worked with Adam at WOR and then WABC.

Jay Elzweig and Jett Lightning came in, as our WABC discussion continued, eventually turning to jingles. Bernie mentioned how JAM Creative Productions recorded a name jingle for her. That jingle has become part of her annual Homecoming Weekend show, which airs after coverage of the football game.

The LIU Sharks‘ Homecoming football game was against the Merrimack Warriors. Merrimack won convincingly 43-5. The Sharks only got a safety and a field goal. I walked toward Bethpage Federal Credit Union Stadium during the third quarter.

I planespotted to and from Bethpage Federal Credit Union Stadium, watching planes turn toward JFK. This is Delta flight 169 from BCN (Barcelona El Prat Airport):

JetBlue flight B6192 from ACK (Nantucket Memorial Airport):

Carnival attractions in the parking lot:

“Hoco”? That’s a new one on me.

The stadium entrance:

A play on Bronko Piersall Field:

The scoreboard:

The new press box and stands:

The opposite side:

That’s enough for me. Back to the station.

Emirates flight 201 from DXB (Dubai International Airport):

Jeff Kroll told me he’s been on that flight in the past, all 13 hours of it.

Delta flight 858 from ATL (Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport):

Delta flight 4721 from BNA (Nashville International Airport):

WCWP’s transmitter:

When the game was over, I got to work photographing the postgame show, hosted by John Zoni:

Here is my aircheck of the postgame show, which includes final thoughts from the broadcast booth by Tom Scavetta and Alex Damiris:

Next, the aforementioned Bernie Bernard:

The first page of her playlist:

Jett Lightning was Bernie’s first guest:

Then, me:

Meanwhile, WCWP’s internet station, The Wave, hosted a barbecue outside. Zach was the grillmaster:

Dave asked for a picture:

Seconds later, Qatar Airways flight 701 from DOH (Doha Hamad International Airport) was flying about as low as the earlier Emirates plane:

Jeff’s been on that flight, too. It’s 14 hours long! Nonetheless, he raved about their service.

One last Delta plane: flight 1984 from SAL (San Salvador International Airport):

Back inside, John Zoni and Lew Scharfberg wrapped up the bagels from earlier in the day:

Jay Elzweig was the last of Bernie’s guests that I photographed and video recorded:

In addition to reminiscing, he gave the weather forecast, right up my alley as a fellow weather buff:

The weather Friday and Saturday was warm and a little humid, but a cold front came through Saturday night, leading to seasonably mild and dry conditions Sunday and Monday.

Video of all three segments (my vidcap is the thumbnail):

I chose to leave earlier this year, but there was more to do before I left.

I photographed Art Beltrone’s interview with Nick Mattina and Griffin Ward:

Art:

Nick:

Griffin:

Art’s notes:

A candid shot of Art’s off-air conversation with Lew Scharfberg:

Then, I recorded Art’s interview with me. Here are vidcaps:

…and the video itself:

I mentioned Dan Cox’s predecessor as WCWP’s Director of Broadcasting, and Dan himself who has held the position for 19 years and counting, but forgot to acknowledge Joe Manfredi, the Director of Operations when I was a student. He’s my fellow 2021 WCWP Hall of Fame inductee along with Jay Mirabile. Participating on Zoom during the broadcast to remedy my omission voided the chance for this interview to air; no double-dipping.

Finally on Saturday, posed photos, starting with Peter Sacoulas and Sami Jo Negron:

Me with Peter and Sami:

John Zoni:

…and Tom Scavetta:

Art Beltrone, Bobby Guthenberg (a.k.a. Bobby G.), Joel Mahan:

Art, Bobby G., Jerry Reilly, Joel:

I met Joel and Jerry in 2019 and was so glad to see them again this year. Joel was eager to listen to my regular Wednesday night show and Bobby complimented my work.

Jett Lightning and Jay Elzweig:

Bernie Bernard:

Bernie and John Mertz:

A candid shot of Art Beltrone and Alan Seltzer:

…and posed:

And with my dad having arrived in the parking lot, the last photo was me with Bobby and Alan:

Like Art at the end of his interview with me, Bobby thanked me for everything I do. I told him I appreciate that.

It’s an aircheck palooza from here on out, except for any photos I find in the WCWP Alumni Association Facebook group. To that end, here’s a photo of another guest on Bernie’s show: her former student Joe Connelly:

Alan Seltzer and Bobby G., followed by just Alan:

And Bernie’s outro:

Bobby G. and Mike Riccio were next at 7PM. Here is a scope of their first hour:

Again, courtesy of Bernie, it’s Bobby and Jett:

Mike Riccio:

And the four original hosts of The Rock Show: Bobby, Mike, Alan and Bernie:

A partial scope of Alan’s 10PM show, Seltzer with a Twist:

Sunday, October 17

Once again, I spent the morning editing content from the day before and the aircheck of Instrumental Invasion. Full details about the show are in a separate post, but here’s the scoped aircheck:

I airchecked a handful of Sunday’s shows, also of the partial scope variety. Jay LaPrise was on at 8AM with The Why I Work in Television Radio Show:

At noon, “Jammin'” Jamie Mazzo and Sara “Sadie” Dorchak hosted The Ladies of Prison Break Radio. This is a partial scope, but a long one: 49 minutes. The aircheck begins with a trailer-style Homecoming Weekend promo voiced by Zach:

10/20 UPDATE: Next, at 4PM, Joseph P. Honerkamp. You can call him Joe. Here’s a full scope:

There’s also a video:

I made a scoped version with re-synced audio and the end part that the video missed:

Jett Lightning came on at 6PM with Lightning’s Hits and Rarities Reliquary. As you’ll hear, Jay Elzweig – weather forecast in tow – joined Jett later in the show:

Rock ‘N’ Soul Gospel followed at 8PM, hosted by Grandfather Rock Chris MacIntosh. His scope includes a community calendar spot voiced by me and a promo for Monday’s 60th anniversary special voiced by Jeff Kroll:

And as midnight approached, Zach wrapped up the weekend that was:

Monday, October 18

I had yet another morning of editing; in this case, Sunday’s aircheck scopes heard above.

Noon came, and so began the WCWP 60th anniversary broadcast, hosted by Art Beltrone and Hank Neimark, board operated by Jeff Kroll, and produced by Pat Kroll; same as Friday.

My initial plan was to listen to the stream, but as noted earlier, I joined in on Zoom. Here are some screencaps:

Show timeline:

  • Introduction with sign-on audio
  • Dr. Jennifer Holmes, Dean of Arts, Communications, and Design; and Michael Berthel, Chief of Staff and Vice President for Student Affairs
  • Hank counts down to 12:15, pops champagne, cuts cake
  • Dr. Kimberly Cline, LIU President
  • Jeff Kroll
  • Dan Cox, WCWP Director of Broadcasting, reads citation from Nassau County Executive Laura Curran
  • Hank Neimark
  • Bruce Mahler (via Zoom)
  • Jon Cole (via Zoom)
  • John Commins (via Zoom)
  • Joel Feltman (via Zoom)
  • Diane Taylor (via Zoom)
  • Stewart Ain (via Zoom)
  • Joe Honerkamp (via Zoom)
  • John LiBretto (via Zoom)
  • Jon Korkes (via Zoom)
  • Rita Sands (on the phone)
  • Bernie Bernard (recorded Saturday)
  • Jeff asks Art and Hank to share their recollections
  • Harry Lowenthal (via Zoom)
  • Mike Chimeri (via Zoom)
  • Bobby Guthenberg (via Zoom)
  • Zach Parker
  • West Side Story opened in theaters the same day WCWP signed on
  • Alan Seltzer (via Zoom)
  • Ted David (recorded via Zoom)
  • Jeff’s recollections, John Commins and Mike Chimeri’s interjections
  • Aleen “Junie” Thomas (via Zoom)
  • Dr. William Martinov, LIU Director of Athletics (recorded Saturday)
  • Andrew Scarpaci (recorded Saturday)
  • Art and Hank re-read citation
  • Pat Kroll
  • Joe Honerkamp and Stewart Ain share stories about Mrs. Abrams
  • Lew Scharfberg (via Zoom)
  • Bruce Leonard (via Zoom)
  • Fred Gaudelli (via Zoom)
  • Bill Mozer (on the phone)
  • Jon Cole, Mike Chimeri, Fred Gaudelli, Joel Feltman speak to Bill
  • Elise Person (recorded on the phone)
  • End

The show was 2 1/2 hours, but I’m posting audio in three parts. Here’s part 1:

Part 2:

Part 3:

And my pre-record-voiding appearance:

Pat Kroll also took several photos, starting with the cake:

Art with the cake:

Hank, Jeff, Art:

Hank cutting the cake:

Dr. Cline:

Dan Cox reads County Executive Curran’s citation:

The citation:

Thank you very much for reading, viewing, and hearing all the way to the end. To repeat myself, I greatly appreciate the support I get for the work I do. This was a labor of love and friendship.

60 cheers to WCWP! See you next year.

My experience at Day 1 of 2021 New York Comic Con October 9, 2021

Posted by Mike C. in Airchecks, Animation, Art, Audio, Audiobooks, DVD, Health, History, Internet, Jazz, Media, Music, News, Personal, Politics, Radio, Technology, Trains, Travel, TV, Video, War, Wrestling.
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Other New York Comic Con recaps: 2012 Day 22014 Day 1, 2017 Day 1, 2018 Day 1, 2019 Day 1

I returned to the Javits Center on Thursday for the first day of this year’s New York Comic Con, my sixth time at the event. It was also the first time I set foot in Manhattan since a failed trip to Lisa Hilton’s performance at Carnegie Hall, nearly two years ago.

The days and weeks leading up to my trip were filled with trepidation. I felt anxious about what to expect. Would there be a capacity limit? Would I get scolded by staff or security? Did I waste my money on a badge? Why did William Shatner have to go to space, leading his events to be moved to the evening?

The day turned out to be as exciting as it was my last time at NYCC in 2019.

Under the assumption that I’d be meeting Shatner, I tweeted him about my concerns:

Been going back/forth on replying, but here goes: I have Asperger Syndrome, & I’m going to day 1 of NY Comic Con on Oct 7. I’m worried about what to expect, including photo op w/you that I bought. I’m hoping staff are nice, not angry/scolding. Will wear mask, of course.

Mike Chimeri

He replied encouragingly. I was hoping to link to that reply, but it seems to have been taken down.

Regardless, that led to many more replies from fellow fans. One fan in the UK made this suggestion:

Hi Mike, not sure if you have the same in the States, but in the UK we have a scheme where people wear a lanyard with sunflowers on, this signifies that the person wearing the lanyard may perceive life differently and to be a bit more understanding around them.

Mark ELVIS Goddard, @GBsBestElvis

He followed that up with…:

They are just a subtle way to let people know to be kind I work in the tourist industry & if a customer is wearing one we automatically know 2b kind & maybe a bit calmer around them, but they don’t have that awkward conversation of explaining why they don’t do lifts for example!

Mark ELVIS Goddard, @GBsBestElvis

So, I paid about $8 for a set of artificial sunflower heads. They shed like dog fur, but I proudly put one in my ticket holder above my badge.

My day began like any other Thursday since last April, in the days when the Javits Center was a field hospital for COVID patients: edit Wednesday’s Instrumental Invasion aircheck, make a scoped version for my blog, publish the blog post, and share the post on social media. That left me about 45 minutes to eat breakfast (a bowl of cereal), shower, and get dressed and packed.

An Uber driver picked me up around 9:00, dropping me off at Wantagh LIRR station within ten minutes. Once there, I bought my ticket and walked to my usual spot on the west end of the platform, above Wantagh Avenue. The train arrived at 9:28:

I was hoping for the new M9 railcar, but it was the old M7. Oh, well.

I listened to much of my aircheck on the platform and then on the train.

Penn Station has changed drastically since last January, as seen in these photos taken on the way back from Javits:

When I arrived at Javits, my Clear app vaccination voucher was scanned, then my badge, and I went through security. It was hassle-free, thankfully. I took the first photo at 10:42, snapping away until I reached the autographing area in hall 1E:

Knowing I’d be meeting Dee Bradley Baker, earlier in the week, I ordered a compilation DVD on Amazon of Phineas and Ferb episodes centered around Perry the Platypus, Dee’s character. Assuming I’d be seeing William Shatner’s panel at 11AM and getting a photo op at 12:10 PM, I bought a 1PM ticket for Dee. Thankfully, it was accepted at 11:00.

As I waited in line, I saw Dee and other celebrity guests assembling behind the curtain. I waved to Dee and he signaled back to me, pointing two fingers at his eyes and then toward me, as if to say “I’m watching you.” That was flattering. When I was next in line, I learned that photos were not allowed at the table; autographs only. I asked the representative if he had a photo op. Yes, at 3:40, an hour and 50 minutes before the rescheduled Shatner photo op would have been. I was fine with that.

Dee and I spoke briefly as he signed the DVD box art:

To Mike!

Dee Baker

Agent P (Perry’s code name in the O.W.C.A. [Organization Without a Cool Acronym])

Dee’s autograph

Then, he graced me with Perry’s signature vocal effect. We said our goodbyes and I proceeded to the sales table to buy my photo op.

It took half an hour because neither my credit nor debit cards worked and I had to withdraw cash from an ATM, then going on the line for cash payments.

I had 3 1/2 hours to spend until it was time to wait in the queue. What to do?

First, I bought lunch at the food court: chicken fingers with waffle fries and a Sprite. I ate as I finished listening to my aircheck. When I went to out my Bose SoundLink wireless headphones away, the ear cushion for the right channel came loose. I had to buy a replacement set from their website.

After that, I proceeded up to the show floor:

What?! Jerry “The King” Lawler and Jim “Good Ol’ J.R.” Ross?!

I was a big pro wrestling fan growing up, along with my sister Lauren and cousins Chris and Sam (Samantha). After another ATM trip, a dream of mine was fulfilled: an autographed photo…:

To Mike!

“King” Jerry Lawler (WWE) HOF 07

Jim Ross

WWE HOF ’07

Jerry and Jim’s autographs

…and a photo op with King and J.R.!:

As you can see, I wore my 2020 U.S. Open shirt, previously seen in my pretend Winged Foot photo.

Before the photo, I told King that I didn’t know he’d be there. True to form, he quipped that he didn’t, either, but found himself and J.R. there anyway, or words to that effect. Don’t quote me. All I know is my comeback was “yeah, that’s how it goes,” meaning that’s what happens. After the photo, I told J.R. how long I’d been a fan and that I really enjoyed his two books, Slobberknocker and Under the Black Hat, which I listened to on Audible. He thanked me. (I synopsized Under the Black Hat in my latest “audiobooking” post.)

I took some more photos on the show floor…:

…then went back to the food court for seltzer (sparkling water) and a cookie. I engaged in conversation with my table mates, then called a few friends, and texted Lauren and Chris with a photo of the photo:

There was still plenty of time, so I sought out room 1E01: the Quiet Room:

As the name suggests, it’s a place where you can silently contemplate. I used my time in the room to charge my phone and draft the post you’re reading now.

My plan to pass the time worked. 3:15 came and I walked to the queue:

I spent the next 20 minutes or so chatting with my fellow queue members, then it was time.

I handed a staff member my ticket, put my belongings on a shelf, and was reunited with Dee. Here is our photo:

I was looking straight ahead, so I didn’t know what expression he made. I love it: Jack Benny-esque.

I said goodbye again, grabbed my belongings, picked up my photo print, and left the Javits Center. I may not have seen and met William Shatner, but I made many lasting memories. I’m so happy with how the day turned out. I will definitely be back.

Incidentally, there are articles on Bill’s 6:45 panel – which I would have seen if it was still at 11AM – on CNN’s website and Mediaite. Mediaite’s article includes a YouTube video of the panel (by Gragon Productions):

I watched on Friday night. It was like I was there in person.

10/13 UPDATE: Bill’s space trip was this morning. I didn’t realize it would only be a few minutes, but those few minutes were literally awesome for him. Watch the Blue Origin webcast replay:

10/14 UPDATE: Then, watch the moment of apogee inside the capsule:

10/17 UPDATE: Blue Origin had one more video up their sleeve: a recap:

Back to October 7.

Here’s my photographic journey back to Penn Station:

I reached Penn at 4:05…:

…and took the 4:12 bound for Wantagh, which was another M7:

When I arrived in Wantagh at 5:02, my mom was waiting to drive me home. As it turns out, the Penn-bound train was an M9:

Back in my room, I took photos of all the day’s belongings:

POSTSCRIPT: While perusing the New York Comic Con site on Friday afternoon, I noticed George Takei, Bill’s Star Trek co-star, was in the Q&A portion of his panel. So, I watched, periodically taking screencaps. In addition to Star Trek, he fielded questions about the animated film Kubo and the Two Strings, the video game Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3, his political activism stemming from internment during World War II (I ached as he told his story), and fond memories of Leonard Nimoy, another Star Trek co-star. One anecdote in particular was about how George saw Leonard perform in the play Equus on Broadway and Leonard returned the favor when George performed in the L.A. production. After the last question, George stood up, thanked the fans in the hall, and gave them Spock’s Vulcan salute. Now, how about those screencaps?

Well, thank you for making it this far. My next task is to chronicle the return of WCWP Homecoming Weekend. Till then, so long.

Instrumental Invasion, 10/6/21 October 7, 2021

Posted by Mike C. in Airchecks, Audio, Internet, Jazz, Media, Music, Personal, Radio, Travel, TV, Video, Weather.
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The October 6 Instrumental Invasion on WCWP was, yet again, recorded over three days: three segments on August 19, two on the 20th, one on the 21st. Pickups were also recorded on the 21st.

The playlist was created and annotated on August 18 and the script was drafted before recording on the 19th.

“Completely Yours” by Patrick Bradley was the latest recurring song to account for its presence on the smooth jazz radio charts at the time of recording. I first played it back on March 24.

After playing later versions of Cedar Walton‘s “Sixth Avenue” (with Eastern Rebellion) and “The Hello” by Chuck Loeb last week, I decided to play the originals this week. Cedar’s original recording of “Sixth Avenue,” on Soundscapes, was excerpted by The Weather Channel for local forecasts in the late 1980s. “Seguaro (sic)” by David Lanz and Paul Speer was heard into the ’90s. Chuck Loeb’s original 1991 recording of “The Hello,” on Balance, featured Nelson Rangell on alto sax. Since saguaro cacti are native to the Sonoran Desert, I got to reference Nelson’s whistling cover of “Sonora” by Hampton Hawes, a staple of his live repertoire. Here’s one such performance at Smooth Jazz for Scholars in 2012:

As for this week’s show, click here to download the aircheck MP3 or listen below:

The aircheck includes a community calendar spot I recorded and my show promo.

9/11: A 20th anniversary retrospective September 13, 2021

Posted by Mike C. in Baseball, Commentary, Fire, History, Internet, Media, News, Personal, Photography, Radio, Travel, TV, Video.
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Saturday marked 20 years since the September 11 attacks. On the tenth anniversary, I posted part of an essay where I recounted my experience on that morning. I wrote it in December 2001 for an end-of-semester portfolio. Following the excerpt, I elaborated on the events of the day and how I coped.

In this post, I’ll elaborate further and share what has happened in the years since.

There were increased expressions of patriotism after 9/11, including flying American flags outside homes and wearing American flag lapel pins. We flew a flag and, for about two years, I wore a lapel pin, usually with a red, white, and blue ribbon attached. For a while, I also wore a patriotic button, but I don’t remember what it said. Here are photographic examples, starting with my friend Joe Horst’s 20th birthday party on October 3, 22 days later:

Sitting in Ehrhart’s Clam House in Freeport (part owned by my family) with Joe Horst, Scott Schoenberg, and Scott Condenzio

Side note: Joe was wearing a Brooklyn Dodgers t-shirt that day. Coincidentally, it was the 50th anniversary of the Shot Heard ‘Round the World: Bobby Thomson’s home run off Dodgers pitcher Ralph Branca to win the National League pennant for the New York Giants. As Russ Hodges said on the Giants radio broadcast: “The Giants win the pennant!”

Back on topic, my 20th birthday, November 17:

Christmas at the Falco house:

Joe Falco, a family friend and FDNY firefighter in Engine 1 Ladder 24, survived the South Tower collapse. He was the subject of a documentary that served as my senior project. You can watch it here:

Ringing in 2002:

For eleven years, inspired by a news report I saw on New Year’s Day in 1994, I saved each year’s desk calendar pages and had friends and family throw them as confetti:

Throwing calendar page confetti

I saved and scanned the September 11 pages:

Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? calendar 9/11 page, front
Back

It’s ironic that the Millionaire calendar question involved the Department of Defense. The Pentagon was one of the targets that morning. 9/14/21 UPDATE: Further irony involved a PAMS jingle for WABC (770 AM) during its Musicradio era: “Flight 77, WABC, nonstop…music.” Earlier in 2001, I discovered Allan Sniffen’s Musicradio tribute site and that was one of the jingles I listened to obsessively, assuming I heard it there if not elsewhere. Obviously, I could never listen to it the same way again. A variation was among jingles recorded by JAM Creative Productions, PAMS’s spiritual successor, for SiriusXM’s 60s on 6.

Weather Whys and Wonders calendar 9/11 page

Hosting The Mike Chimeri Show on March 1, 2002:

One last photo: July 12, 2002, heading back from Atlantic Canada aboard the Carnival Triumph:

The cruise embarked from the Hudson River side of Midtown Manhattan, taking us past where the towers fell ten months earlier:

Cruising past Lower Manhattan aboard the Carnival Triumph, ten months after 9/11

I still have the lapel pin, which I showed on social media Saturday morning:

On September 12, 2001, I added angel wings and a halo to the twin towers portion of a backdrop I made five years earlier for a home video/audio show I did with my cousin – The Chris and Mike Chimeri Show – based on a video bumper for The Late Show with David Letterman. I kept the backdrop up until September 30, 2019, during a basement cleanup. I photographed the backdrop for posterity before taking it down (for privacy, I’ve blurred my signature):

My family lit memorial candles in the backyard, as seen on the 14th, three days after the attacks:

I did not know any of the victims personally, but Cynthia D’Arpino, my learning assistant in ARC (C.W. Post’s Academic Resource Center), lost her brother-in-law Tim O’Brien who worked for Cantor Fitzgerald. On the tenth anniversary, I photographed the TV when his name was read:

I did the same for Richie Muldowney:

Like Joe Falco, Richie was a Freeport native and firefighter, also serving in the FDNY, Engine 16 Ladder 7. He was among the 343 FDNY firefighters lost on 9/11. Beginning in 2011, I got to know his niece Lauren, mother Anne (who passed away in 2020) and surviving siblings: fraternal twins Kevin (Lauren’s father) and Colleen (Andello), and Mary (a.k.a. Mary Mo). I have yet to meet Brian, but for all I know, I met him, and Richie, when I was younger. My father Bill says it’s possible I saw Richie when I worked in Ehrhart’s Clam House (May 2000 to November 2001). In April 2012, Kevin married my mother’s friend and co-worker Mandy.

In 2013, I attended Freeport’s 9/11 memorial ceremony. The attacks led my dad to become a firefighter himself in 2002, in Truck 1, Joe Falco’s Freeport Fire Department company. I took a photo of him before the ceremony:

My father, Bill Chimeri, at Freeport’s 9/11 memorial ceremony in 2013

During the ceremony:

The following year, Dad and I ran (and walked) the Stephen Siller Tunnel to Towers 5K.

Along the way, I photographed the new One World Trade Center (a.k.a. Freedom Tower)…:

…and a banner with Richie’s photo:

It’s become a 9/11 tradition on Facebook to link to the 2011 “My 9/11 experience” blog post, the Joe Falco documentary, and sometimes, a photo of the World Trade Center that I took in December 1999, after touring the Museum of Jewish Heritage in Battery Park:

Last year, a podcast host discovered my documentary and asked to use portions of it in a special 9/11 episode. I happily agreed.

A wealth of retrospective documentaries have aired on various channels this year and I’ve watched them all. It may be a cliche, but we can never forget. Those documentaries are a permanent reminder of what happened, along with stories of survival and how the victims’ children have grown into adulthood.

I wasn’t sure I would be able to muster up a blog post to mark the 20th anniversary, but here we are. Thank you for reading.

9/16/21 UPDATE: Game Dave‘s latest video is a Q&A edition of Digitally Distracted. For that video, I submitted a 9/11-related question, which he answered (video cued up to relevant portion):

Instrumental Invasion, 8/18/21 August 19, 2021

Posted by Mike C. in Airchecks, Animation, Audio, Food, Internet, Jazz, Media, Music, Personal, Rock, Travel.
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The August 18 Instrumental Invasion on WCWP was recorded two segments per day from July 8 to 10.

The playlist was created on July 7 and annotated on the 8th. This time, I drafted the script as I recorded.

Since the show aired on my father Bill’s birthday, just as March 10 was my mother Lisa’s birthday, I chose to play “Daddy’s Got a New Girl Now” (even though I’m a boy) by Spyro Gyra and David Benoit‘s cover of “Secret Love” since he recorded it with his father Bob. As usual for my dad’s birthday (which he shares with David), we went out for dinner at Sushi Time 560 in Bethpage.

I also made sure to include Road Runner sound effects leading into “Roadrunner” by Boney James. I said “meep meep” myself when talking up the song in my overnight Homecoming Weekend show in 2017 and coming out of Lee Ritenour‘s “Road Runnerlast December 2.

“Hipster” by Alexander Zonjic was previously played on January 6. I referred to irony, at the root of hipster culture, in both talk-ups.

Click here to download the aircheck MP3 or listen below:

The left channel audio was barely audible, so the aircheck is mono from the right channel. (8/26 UPDATE: The next show had the same problem.)

Mini golf in Bethpage, walking the Jones Beach boardwalk August 6, 2021

Posted by Mike C. in Aviation, Golf, Personal, Photography, Travel.
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My friend Kelly visited from Connecticut last weekend. Among our Saturday exploits were a round of mini golf at Bethpage Mini Golf, located within Batter Up, and a walk along the Jones Beach boardwalk.

First, the mini golf photos:mc73121001-smallermc73121002-smallermc73121003-smallermc73121004-smallermc73121008-smallermc73121006-smaller

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Kelly kept score:bethpageminigolf-73121-1
Upon scanning the card when we got home, I noticed that there was a five-stroke limit, rendering the score incorrect.

Here is the corrected scorecard:bethpageminigolf-73121-correction-1

After about an hour at home, Kelly and I headed down to Jones Beach to walk the boardwalk.

We drove south on the Wantagh Parkway:
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I periodically photographed planes that had taken off from Republic Airport… or were approaching John F. Kennedy International Airport. This one just left Republic:MC73121044MC73121045-smallerMC73121046-smallerMC73121047-smallerMC73121048-smallerMC73121049-smallerMC73121050-smallerMC73121051-smallerMC73121052-1-smallerMC73121053-1-smallerMC73121054-smaller
We briefly drove west on Ocean Parkway before turning into Field 4:
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We parked in the H section:MC73121059-smaller
This is one of many planes approaching JFK:MC73121060

Thanks to FlightStats, I was able to identify each plane. Above was JetBlue Flight 4 from Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport (San Juan).

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9/11 memorial:MC73121065-smallerMC73121067-smaller
This was the best view of the water tower:MC73121068-smallerMC73121069-smallerMC73121070-smaller
AgustaWestland AW109, owned by Area 109 in Brooklyn:MC73121071MC73121072-smallerMC73121073-smallerMC73121074-smaller
Kelly and I posted for photos along the south end of the boardwalk. Here’s mine:MC73121076-smaller
Lufthansa Flight 10 from Franz Josef Strauss Airport (Munich):MC73121077MC73121078-smallerMC73121079-smallerMC73121080-smallerMC73121081-smallerMC73121082-smaller
This GA (general aviation) aircraft was arriving at Republic: MC73121083MC73121084-smaller
Northwell Health at Jones Beach Theater:MC73121085-smallerMC73121086-smallerMC73121088-smallerMC73121089-smaller

We turned back for Field 4 just shy of the East Bathhouse.

EgyptAir Flight 985 from Cairo International Airport:MC73121091MC73121092-smallerMC73121094-smallerMC73121095-smallerMC73121096-smallerMC73121097-1-smallerMC73121098-smallerMC73121099-smallerMC73121100-smallerMC73121101-smaller
I didn’t notice a rainbow in the sprinkler stream until editing on Monday:MC73121103-smaller
Aer Lingus Flight 305 from Dublin Airport:MC73121104
A close view of Jones Beach Theater off Bay Parkway:MC73121106-smaller
Back on Wantagh Parkway:MC73121107-smallerMC73121108-smallerMC73121109-1-smallerMC73121110-1-smallerMC73121112-smallerMC73121114-smallerMC73121115-smallerMC73121116-smallerMC73121117-1-smallerMC73121118-smaller

From here, Kelly and I traveled west on Merrick Road for dinner at La Piazza in Merrick.

It was a fun afternoon, and weekend, for both of us.

Instrumental Invasion, 6/9/21 June 10, 2021

Posted by Mike C. in Airchecks, Audio, Internet, Jazz, Media, Music, New Age, Personal, Radio, Travel, Video.
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The June 9 Instrumental Invasion on WCWP was recorded two segments per day from May 4 to 6. Pickups for the first two segments of the second hour were recorded on the 20th.

The playlist was created on May 2 with annotations and the script draft following on the 3rd. In spite of additional time allowed for talk breaks, I still wrote too much for myself to say, but I also didn’t write enough for two breaks. The latter issue allowed me to share a Jaco Pastorius tidbit I couldn’t share earlier due to the former issue. The drive through Oakland Park occurred on March 3, 2019, the day after my cousin David’s wedding to Talia. Here’s a photo:

The song I played before sharing the tidbit was “Jaco Smiled” by Ken Navarro, whose birthday coincided with last night’s show. As the show was winding down, he posted this video on Facebook, thanking everyone for the birthday wishes:

Click here to download the aircheck MP3 or listen below:

For the second week in a row, one of my spots ran during a break. This time, it was for the community calendar. You can hear it at the 3:58 mark.