Number 300 with Sajak and Shearer

A little more than 6 years ago on a rainy day in the back room of a bungalow in Venice, California, we recorded the first Ricochet Podcast on an old school MacBook. The cast has changed slightly since then, but through one and a half Presidential cycles, two mid-terms, countless culture wars, good guests, bad guests, Skype glitches, and even bad weather, we have persevered. So it’s with great pleasure that we bring you this, our 300th show with guests Harry Shearer and Pat Sajak. We won’t delve into the topics here, but rest assured, they are widely entertaining and diverse.

Thanks to all you, our loyal listeners who tune in each, and thanks to our sponsors, who help keep the lights on. On to #301!

The opening sequence for the Ricochet Podcast was composed and produced by James Lileks.

Yes, you should absolutely subscribe to this podcast. It helps!

Thanks to the great EJHill for the hundreds of amazing Photoshops (like this one).

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There are 39 comments.

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  1. Member

    Not to quibble, but the podcast began 6 years ago, or just about 6 years ago. As I recall, the podcast came a few months before the launch of the original site.

    • #1
    • April 15, 2016, at 12:42 PM PDT
    • Like
  2. Podcaster

    The oldest piece of podcast art on my hard drive (transferred from two laptops ago):

    October 9_2010And this, to the best of my recollection, was just posted in the comments section. And I didn’t even post it. Back in the early days of 1.0 I had to email Diane Ellis every snarky Photoshop I wanted to share.

    In our current episode, James and Co. recall the famous Emergency Broadcast System error from 1971. I posted about this (audio included) a little over a year ago. And so did James at The Bleat.

    For giggles, here’s the earliest known archive of Ricochet at Archive.org. Before that it was the domain of a wireless internet provider.

    Happy days.

    • #2
    • April 15, 2016, at 12:59 PM PDT
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  3. Podcaster

    Jim Chase: Not to quibble…

    Quibbles and bits.

    • #3
    • April 15, 2016, at 12:59 PM PDT
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  4. Admin
    Blue Yeti Post author

    Jim Chase:Not to quibble, but the podcast began 6 years ago, or just about 6 years ago. As I recall, the podcast came a few months before the launch of the original site.

    Typo, fixed. Thanks!

    • #4
    • April 15, 2016, at 1:05 PM PDT
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  5. Contributor

    I boldly, courageously agree with everyone who has eyes: EJ Hill’s Photoshops are amazing, and they seem to go from strength to strength. If you handed EJ $50 million and the crew of “Avatar”, he could give you a brand new feature film with Katherine Hepburn at age 25. And I, for one, would pay to see it.

    • #5
    • April 15, 2016, at 1:50 PM PDT
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  6. Member

    I cursed my way through the first half of the podcast, livid that no one had mentioned Bob and Ray. And then came your redemption. Thank you. You have justified my recent Amazon expenditure of $170 for what is titled Bob and Ray: The Complete Collection (Volume One).

    • #6
    • April 15, 2016, at 1:52 PM PDT
    • Like
  7. Admin
    Blue Yeti Post author

    Blue Yeti:

    Jim Chase:Not to quibble, but the podcast began 6 years ago, or just about 6 years ago. As I recall, the podcast came a few months before the launch of the original site.

    Typo, fixed. Thanks!

    Speaking of dates, I just unearthed (at EJHill’s urging), episode #1, dated February 18th, 2010. If people are interested, we can post it later today or over the weekend.

    • #7
    • April 15, 2016, at 2:21 PM PDT
    • Like
  8. Contributor

    Basil Fawlty: I cursed my way through the first half of the podcast, livid that no one had mentioned Bob and Ray. And then came your redemption. Thank you.

    Don’t get me started on those guys. Curious: how is the complete collection named? The Bob & Ray body of work is a nomenclature nightmare.

    • #8
    • April 15, 2016, at 2:38 PM PDT
    • Like
  9. Member

    Blue Yeti:

    Blue Yeti:

    Jim Chase:Not to quibble, but the podcast began 6 years ago, or just about 6 years ago. As I recall, the podcast came a few months before the launch of the original site.

    Typo, fixed. Thanks!

    Speaking of dates, I just unearthed (at EJHill’s urging), episode #1, dated February 18th, 2010. If people are interested, we can post it later today or over the weekend.

    Please do.

    • #9
    • April 15, 2016, at 2:40 PM PDT
    • Like
  10. Member

    James Lileks:

    Basil Fawlty: I cursed my way through the first half of the podcast, livid that no one had mentioned Bob and Ray. And then came your redemption. Thank you.

    Don’t get me started on those guys. Curious: how is the complete collection named? The Bob & Ray body of work is a nomenclature nightmare.

    Just search Amazon for Bob & Ray: The Complete Collection. It’s sold as a flash drive.

    (If your question was a Komodo Dragon reference, I’m sorry I missed it.)

    • #10
    • April 15, 2016, at 2:54 PM PDT
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  11. Coolidge

    Why can’t Pat Sajak be on more than once every 100 episodes? Can we shoot for every 50th?

    • #11
    • April 15, 2016, at 4:03 PM PDT
    • Like
  12. Member

    EJHill:The oldest piece of podcast art on my hard drive (transferred from two laptops ago):

    October 9_2010And this, to the best of my recollection, was just posted in the comments section. And I didn’t even post it. Back in the early days of 1.0 I had to email Diane Ellis every snarky Photoshop I wanted to share.

    In our current episode, James and Co. recall the famous Emergency Broadcast System error from 1971. I posted about this (audio included) a little over a year ago. And so did James at The Bleat.

    For giggles, here’s the earliest known archive of artRicochet at Archive.org. Before that it was the domain of a wireless internet provider.

    Happy days.

    Breitbart and Mark Steyn and Yoo. Oh my!

    • #12
    • April 15, 2016, at 4:14 PM PDT
    • Like
  13. Coolidge

    Congratulations, gentlemen. You’ve pulled something off here (not a scab), and created something from nothing. Not easily done.

    • #13
    • April 15, 2016, at 5:02 PM PDT
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  14. Inactive

    Hugh Laurie, in his role as House in House M.D. had a pitch perfect American accent.

    • #14
    • April 15, 2016, at 5:08 PM PDT
    • Like
  15. Member

    Bad guests?

    My only lament (well, other than the loss of Steyn) is the end of the member post of the week. It was a goal of mine to earn the ricochet mug and a discussion of my post by the guys. 200 some-odd posts later, I had one promoted to the main feed only to discover that the feature had been sacked.

    • #15
    • April 15, 2016, at 9:09 PM PDT
    • Like
  16. Admin
    Blue Yeti Post author

    RyanM:Bad guests?

    My only lament (well, other than the loss of Steyn) is the end of the member post of the week. It was a goal of mine to earn the ricochet mug and a discussion of my post by the guys. 200 some-odd posts later, I had one promoted to the main feed only to discover that the feature had been sacked.

    We still do it, although we don’t give away a mug any more. I’d be open to bringing that back, though.

    • #16
    • April 15, 2016, at 9:15 PM PDT
    • Like
  17. Contributor

    Ryan M is our Hemingway–er, that is if we didn’t already have an actual Hemingway or two. Okay, maybe he’s Ricochet’s Charles Dickens, shocking us with eloquent, quietly indignant courthouse stories about shattered lives, false hopes and humble souls caught in the wringer. Very few others on the Right have that talent. Very few on the Left would believe writers like that exist. We’re not even talking “Flyaway Country” here, just the written anecdotes.

    End of supportive rant about someone who tells family dysfunction stories that could reduce the cops on “The Shield” to tears.

    • #17
    • April 15, 2016, at 9:50 PM PDT
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  18. Podcaster

    Gary McVey: If you handed EJ $50 million and the crew of “Avatar”…

    Naw. If you handed me $5oM you’d never see or hear from me again… ever.

    • #18
    • April 15, 2016, at 10:03 PM PDT
    • Like
  19. Member

    Blue Yeti:

    RyanM:Bad guests?

    My only lament (well, other than the loss of Steyn) is the end of the member post of the week. It was a goal of mine to earn the ricochet mug and a discussion of my post by the guys. 200 some-odd posts later, I had one promoted to the main feed only to discover that the feature had been sacked.

    We still do it, although we don’t give away a mug any more. I’d be open to bringing that back, though.

    Something to shoot for, then! You guys reward member posts with a segment that has James reading one paragraph (or sentence) aloud… that will start the race to the top.

    • #19
    • April 15, 2016, at 11:03 PM PDT
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  20. Member

    Rob’s holding a Selmer ‘BT’ (Balanced Tone) clarinet, so the picture is probably from the 40’s, and we know the clarinetist is not Artie Shaw.

    We all bring our level of knowledge to make this a better informed Ricochet. Lileks would understand. Proceed.

    • #20
    • April 16, 2016, at 6:14 AM PDT
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  21. Podcaster

    mezzrow: Rob’s holding a Selmer ‘BT’ (Balanced Tone) clarinet, so the picture is probably from the 40’s, and we know the clarinetist is not Artie Shaw.

    That is correct. There was, of course, only one other legendary clarinetist of the era. And if you know the era you would be flabbergasted by the make up of this trio.

    • #21
    • April 16, 2016, at 6:39 AM PDT
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  22. Member

    On the consolidation of broadcast radio, you are missing the emerging LP market. Small, micro-wattage stations that fill a local need. I am getting involved with my town’s radio station. WBNH-LP in Bedford, NH.

    • #22
    • April 16, 2016, at 6:47 AM PDT
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  23. Member

    Who sang the closing song? I like it.

    • #23
    • April 16, 2016, at 8:58 AM PDT
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  24. Member

    A few days back I commented in the Ricochet FB Group on how I missed the feel and production values of the flagship Podcast as it was at the beginning, and maybe until 2011 or 2012. Well, the sound of #300 is still too compressed for my tastes, but it is otherwise wonderful and has what I complained was missing. Great podcast! Just so dense in interesting conversation. Love it!

    • #24
    • April 16, 2016, at 10:00 AM PDT
    • Like
  25. Member

    Not to take anything away from Jack Benny and the other early tv comedians, but didn’t they do a lot of radio live before audiences? That would seem great tv prep.

    • #25
    • April 16, 2016, at 10:21 AM PDT
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  26. Admin
    Blue Yeti Post author

    ParisParamus:A few days back I commented in the Ricochet FB Group on how I missed the feel and production values of the flagship Podcast as it was at the beginning, and maybe until 2011 or 2012. Well, the sound of #300 is still too compressed for my tastes, but it is otherwise wonderful and has what I complained was missing. Great podcast! Just so dense in interesting conversation. Love it!

    For the record, we compressed the show at a much higher rate back in the day than we do now, as download speeds and storage are much faster and cheaper now.

    • #26
    • April 16, 2016, at 10:50 AM PDT
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  27. Member

    Well, I stand corrected. What I was getting at was that it sounded less polished back then, which is how I like my talk media.

    • #27
    • April 16, 2016, at 11:01 AM PDT
    • Like
  28. Podcaster

    ParisParamus: Not to take anything away from Jack Benny and the other early tv comedians, but didn’t they do a lot of radio live before audiences? That would seem great tv prep.

    From 1933 to 1947 network radio was almost 100% live. The single, most popular show in the early 30s was Amos’n’Andy which started out as a recorded syndicated program. NBC and CBS sought to stigmatize syndicated fare by calling prerecorded shows inferior and banning them from their airwaves.

    The only exception were game shows whose outcomes were unscripted and thus could not be duplicated for a second west coast feed.

    After a contract dispute with NBC and his sponsor, Bing Crosby was brought back to radio by ABC in 1947 with the promise that he could prerecord his programs. Better yet, he was allowed to use the new Ampex reel-to-reel tape recorders. Philco Radio Time became the first show on radio that was untimed and then edited down to 29:50. After that the walls came tumbling down and by 1950 all shows were prerecorded.

    As for training for television I’m not sure how good it was. In radio you never had to memorize lines. The secret was learning the silent page turn.

    • #28
    • April 16, 2016, at 11:31 AM PDT
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  29. Thatcher

    Tedley:Who sang the closing song? I like it.

    I think it is the Decemberists, “Why We Fight”. Great to hear the complete song.

    • #29
    • April 16, 2016, at 1:01 PM PDT
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  30. Admin
    Blue Yeti Post author

    Maureen Rice:

    Tedley:Who sang the closing song? I like it.

    I think it is the Decemberists, “Why We Fight”. Great to hear the complete song.

    It is indeed and we used it as the opening for the show for almost two years.

    • #30
    • April 16, 2016, at 1:48 PM PDT
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