Friday, March 26, 2004

Rack Him, He's Out

Without Tony, what's the point of radio?

Today was the last day for the Tony Kornheiser show on ESPN Radio.

I was an extremely limited listener. It ran from 10:00 a.m. to 1 p.m. each day. Of those three hours, I generally heard maybe fifteen minutes--usually it was the "Old Guy Radio" segment at the beginning of the third hour as I was on my way to lunch, and the e-mail segment at the end of the show as I was on my way back to work. Also, the show was on for several years, and I discovered it only maybe seven months ago when the CD player in my car went haywire and I was reduced to listening to the radio until I got it fixed.

The great thing about Tony's show is that it wasn't just a sports show. He talked about a little bit of everything. He's a smart guy, a well-rounded guy, and I learned a lot from listening to the show. He's also funny, which makes it interesting and easy to listen to. He talked today on his farewell show about how he loves sports, but he also realized that there are plenty of other things in the universe and you have to be open to those other things in order to be a well-rounded person, and that he tried to reflect that in the show.

That's something I feel is true for myself also. Anyone who knows you can tell you that I love sports, to the point where, if pressed, I'd say they're my foremost interest. There are plenty of other things I love too, though. It always drives me crazy that so many people who are interested in sports think they have to conform to stereotypes and thus won't allow themselves to get into certain things, or act as though anything other than sports is outside their universe. Tony appealed to the intelligent sports fan. Yeah, he talked about sports. He also talked about movies, music, books, pop culture (all of which I love), politics, current events (which I don't necessarily love, but I'm pretty interested), and his own day-to-day life.

There's absolutely no other show like it out there anywhere. I'll try the new show that starts Monday (hosted by a guy named Colin Cowherd, if I'm remembering right), and I'll give it a chance. I wouldn't be too surprised if I start firing up my CD player on my lunch hour again, though.

Beyond that, I'll still watch Tony on ESPN's Pardon the Interruption with Michael Wilbon; I'll still read his columns in the Washington Post. When he finally gets a new radio show (which he's said on the air that he will--he just didn't like working with ESPN Radio management), I'll hope that it's available on a local Toledo-area station (or online) at a time that's convenient to me.

If you're out on your bike tonight, do wear white.

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