‘Quick, Fire’ Challenge

Billboard on bus shelter shows Strombo and reads Haven't talked to George? Quick, fire your publicist.

This advertisement was custom-situated between Bloor St. and Bistro 990 – in other words, in the lunchtime flightpath of Toronto International Film Festival nabobs.

Special to Wandering Coyote: Do you still contend that The Hour is not a full-on celebrity-interview show?


  • Fake Ouimet says:

    Clever, Allan. And mercifully brief.

    But a director of communications can fend for himself. Still and all, I would choose the existing radio silence over a reliance on drive-by anonymous comments.

  • Allan says:

    “Kevin Payan, Director, Strategic Communications, CBC/Radio-Canada, guilty until proven innocent!”

    ~ the j in j’accuse stands for joe

  • Anonymous says:

    Fake Ouimet, you really should read his comments. Not only are they good, but they’re right.

  • Anonymous says:

    Sorry, but do you not realize that Allan was the very worst part of the old Teamakers?

    If this is just going to be an Allan back-and-forth blog, you can shoot your relevance in the face.

  • Fake Ouimet says:

    Again, Allan, I only read your lede, not your whole 300-word comment. It wasn’t a veiled accusation, it was an open accusation. I’m prepared to be proven wrong. It ain’t happened yet.

  • Allan says:

    Consider keeping your suspicions to yourself joe, because once you publish them they become something close to a veiled accusation.
    So listen up mr. I-see-nothing clark.

    I find no evidence to suggest that an administrator, any administrator from the CBC is posting anonymously here.
    (unless you count Ouimet)
    I see no basis for suspecting that Mr. Kevin Payan is a person of such judgement as to post anonymous comments at the incredibly important joe clark blog.

    If I’ve missed some nuance then please enlighten me Sherlock.
    And until then, here’s another story just for you, bloggermiester joe.

    I was reading a discussion one night at the former inside cbc/ Tod blog, and following an exchange between Justin Beach and some commenter identifying themselves as “RUNuts”.
    Out of nowhere, Justin decides to respond to that person by referring to them as “RUNuts(Allan)”.

    How do you think I felt about that?
    How do you think I felt about that when there was no evidence that I was present while this conversation was taking place?
    How do you think I felt about that remark being let in by Tod, the guy who has a strict policy against personal attacks?

    And what do you think these two jackasses said when I challenged them about this?
    Nothing from Tod.
    And from Justin it was “oh, I thought it was you.”
    Well it wasn’t me, and I did not appreciate being brought into that without a chance to speak for myself.

    Nor did I appreciate it if that was intended to bait me, and afford me the chance to have to write a comment, as you tried to do with Kevin Payan.

  • Allan says:

    So you air/print suspicions.
    Now we’re all in trouble.
    And you publish but don’t read comments addressed to you.
    These are strange days indeed at Tea Makers.xmaglpsvlb

  • Fake Ouimet says:

    What I have is a suspicion, Allan. I am allowed to air suspicions.

    I didn’t read past your first sentence.

  • Allan says:

    So you don’t actually have anything on Kevin Payan. You just thought you’d be a smart ass, and then indignant when they won’t post your more than silly remark.
    An apology would be in order, would it not?
    Or let me guess. For joe clark, that’s out of the question.
    You want CBC management to take you and your gripes seriously, and treat you with respect.
    But that expectation doesn’t apply to the behaviour of the one and only, unique joe clark. Or am I missing something.

    Let me tell you a story, joe, and maybe you’ll get something from it. Or maybe not.

    It was 1968 (before you were born, joe)
    I was working at an underground newspaper, if that could be called work.
    My friend Dan, editor and publisher of the Georgia Straight in Vancouver, got a phone call from Pat Burns.
    Burns had a radio talk show on CJOR, and was very hot. The way Bill O’Rielly is today for example.
    And being in radio and it being the nature of broadcasting, Burns had time to fill each and every day, as you know and understand well, joe.
    So Burns calls my friend Dan, owner of the local Hippie newspaper, as aforementioned, and asked if Dan would come on the air with him later that afternoon.
    Dan was smart, one of the smartest people I’ve known, so he wasn’t entirely without suspicion when dealing with the established media. But he was also a fundamentally very decent person. He had integrity and humility.
    He agreed to do the show. If nothing else it was a chance to show that hippies think about things and care about things, and it was only for a few minutes anyway.

    At the agreed time, Dan gets on the line with him and they start to talk.
    It then becomes increasingly apparent that Pat Burns is not interested in what Dan has to say, he just wants to argue. In fact what he really wants to do, apparently, is yell at Dan.
    The call is climaxed by Pat hanging up on Dan.

    Afterwards Dan comes over to me and tells me the story. He’s very calm but alert as always. I can feel that he’s annoyed and disappointed. There’s a touch of that quiet shock of having to accept that he’d been used. That he had played fair, but the other guy had not.

    Dan looked at me and, what could I say.
    Dan knew that I had just come over from working at CJOR. At a talk show only a bit like the one he had just been involved with.

    I’ll tell you joe that I had a slight feeling of being ashamed.
    My industry, an industry I believed in, had just ripped off one of my best friends. Ripped him off of just a tiny and temporary piece of his dignity.
    And I felt ashamed that I had tolerated it next to me where I worked. But of course I also knew that such was the nature of the beast. The beast called Broadcasting. Free market broadcasting.
    I had no words for Dan, I just closed my lips tightly and slowly nodded my head, trying to convey “yep, that’s broadcasting”.
    But also conveying to myself, “I’m going to remember this”.

    And I did!

    The moral of my story, joe, as you go beddy bye bye, is that when one person in broadcasting messes people over, it reflects on all of us in broadcasting, all who love broadcasting.
    Today, people like blogging a lot.
    And that you can’t trust anyone in media, because of all of them have to fill time and, if they’re any good, they’ll do whatever it takes to fill that time.
    And some of them are not all that concerned about other people, or what happens beyond tomorrow.
    Watch out for those people, joe.

    And more importantly, and most of all, don’t become one of those people.

    Pat Burns is dead.
    He was a legend in broadcasting.
    He was truly great.
    Tod Maffin and I both loved listening to Pat Burns.
    And that’s a fact.

  • Fake Ouimet says:

    Allan, troll through the archives and take a shot. Hit a bullseye and you get a toffee.

  • Anonymous says:

    As the audiences for the television service are so poor the administration is eyeing the real estate of morning radio which, across the country, draws large numbers. Those ads you keep hearing on radio for Wheel of Fortune are there to set a precedent. It’s over. We let it happen.

  • Anonymous says:

    Anon @ 1:55:

    The recent programming on CBC Television indicates it is indeed aiming at the masses. It is the biggest opportunity to bring in needed dollars, since our leaders seem incapable of lobbying for more or changing that plan.

    Best opportunity for true arts coverage would seem to be Radio until it is commercialized, and perhaps the web. There are many opportunities to appeal to strong, narrow audiences online.

  • Allan says:

    Which anonymous comment did you think belonged to Payan?

  • Fake Ouimet says:

    Allan: Yes, you do. I sign my name to everything. Fake Ouimet is merely a username, and I don’t write anonymous comments.

  • Allan says:

    If we’re only supposed to go through joe clark now, tell him to stop using fake names to write comments that compliment himself.
    Wait – have I got that wrong?

  • Bytowner says:

    Anon 12:58 – That the celebrity interviews are being done elsewhere is not under dispute here. Whether it’s being done more effectively and usefully elsewhere is. You may find some who are dissatisfied with the private networks’ approaches, overlap or not.

    Anon 8:27 – Why are you decrying the historical facts of the reasons for Canada’s birth again?

  • Anonymous says:

    “a full-on interview show”

    interspersed with anti-American musings and liberal opinions…

  • Anonymous says:

    George seems to have a promo budget second only to Vanna White. Has anyone done a cost/benefit analysis of all this spending? What’s the best he can do? And if the purpose of the poster is to troll for celeb guests, should the cost come from a promotional envelope? If after all this, “the public wants” to watch something else isn’t it a waste of resources.

  • Anonymous says:

    @anonymous 11:34

    “celeb or ARTS coverage elsewhere in the CBC”

    Two different things – very, very few celebrities are artists and there is no arts coverage on CBC Television – none at all, except the occasional short newsworld piece about a writer or something but ARTS and Celebrity have about as much to do with one another as sports and the arts.

  • Anonymous says:

    No one ever said you were “too good”. It’s quite the opposite. It’s “too intellectually lazy” to imagine some other sort of programming.

    If “what the public wants” is your mandate I should tell you it has been fulfilled elsewhere. In spades. You’ll soon be hearing that more and more from from the Harper majority Government. I think they have a plan to address the overlap.

  • tgreen says:

    wow. that’s so… cheesy

  • Anonymous says:

    Typical elitist snobbery: We are too good to interview celebs.

    Well, you will go FAR with that attitue, baby.

    I have a surprise for you – that’s what the public wants. That’s what is popular.

    There are interviewers who can take an interview with a celeb we’ve seen many a time and make that ORIGINAL thru the questions s/he asks.

    And NO there are not a lot of opportunities for celeb or ARTS coverage elsewhere in the CBC – except perhaps Sunday or the Newsworld show, The Scene – so YES, we could use them… but do it in an intelligent way!

  • Wandering Coyote says:

    I’m not getting into this.

  • Anonymous says:

    And there is a crying need for more entertainment celeb interviews on television.

  • Bytowner says:

    I’m reasonably sure that Mr. Strombolopoulos has the means to do “something original”. And that he’ll use them as needed.

  • Anonymous says:

    George is better interviewing celebs and folks in the entertainment industry than politicians, activists, etc. basically the people you can get EVERYWHERE else on the Ceeb.

    But the sign, rather than clever, cries of desperation!

    as for effectiveness, perhaps it was worth a shot, but really, it’s doubtful a celeb is going to get on the phone with their publicist booking an interview once stepping out of Bistro.

  • Anonymous says:

    That is so sad.

    But then all of Toronto puts on this embarrassing show of pandering to Hollywood around TIFF, why shouldn’t George jump on the bandwagon. It’s easier, too, to interview show business celebs, the background, clips and questions come ready made. Maybe George doesn’t have the resources to do something original. And admit it a cheesy celeb interview is better than those in-house cold openers.

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