News From Terre Haute, Indiana

Liz Ciancone

April 23, 2013

LIZ CIANCONE: A memory test from the oldtime radio days

TERRE HAUTE — For some reason, I seem to be the go-to source for all sorts of obscure information out at the Wabash Valley Family Sports Center.

I’m not sure whether this is supposed to be a tribute to what the “Knights of the Round Table” consider my memory, or maybe they just think I am old enough to have seen — and remembered — it all.

Who could forget, for example, that it was Minnie Pearl of the “Grand Ol’ Opry” who forgot to take the price tab off her hat and doesn’t everyone remember that Fibber McGee and Molly lived at 79 Wistful Vista? Not I certainly.

But the other morning when I was about to head for home and a hot shower, Fred asked me the name of the guy who had been master of ceremonies for the old radio program, “The Breakfast Club.” I hated to let the side down, but honestly all I could recall at a moment’s notice was the theme song and the fact that the emcee’s first name was Don.

So, we kicked it around for a bit and finally, probably Lennie whose memory and life experience is equal to mine, suggested that he thought it was a Scottish name — “Mac something, I think,” he said. Finally someone — not me — came up with Don McNeil, and so it was.

I could have warbled the theme song for “The Breakfast Club,” but by popular request, I didn’t.

But my Best Friend and I had a pleasant drive home remembering those early radio shows: “Jack Armstrong, All-American Boy” and “Mr. Keene, Tracer of Lost Persons.” We even remembered “Jolly Joe Kelly” and his theme song. I did sing that one in the privacy of our car and although I did not get rave reviews from my BF he had to applaud my memory.

I remember especially how Dad could not get to the radio fast enough to shut up Jolly Joe as he concluded his song with a welcome “to all you boys and girls” and added “Heh-o Daddy and a great big hug and a smacker for Grandma and Grandpa.”

Dad’s problem was that Jolly Joe made his pitch immediately after the news show and Dad didn’t want to miss Julian Bentley and the news. While Dad hung on Julian’s last words, Jolly Joe made his pitch and Dad grabbed for the shut-off dial.

No one has asked — yet — but who can forget Lulu Belle and Skyland Scottie or the Hoosier Hot Shots. The latter never started until someone had asked, “Are you ready, Hezzie?”

My memory is probably a bit long although I claim no expertise on the current crop of rap artists. I do know that I am not apt to forget Don McNeil any time soon.

Liz Ciancone is a retired Tribune-Star reporter. Send e-mail to opinion@tribstar.com.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Liz Ciancone
Latest News
TribStar.com Poll
AP Video
Joy Fills Streets of Cleveland As LeBron Returns Raw: Rebel Leader Weds in Eastern Ukraine Raw: Israel, Gaza Exchange Rocket Fire Texas Shooting Suspect Collapses in Court Police: Prostitute Linked to 2nd Death Ana Ortiz on 'Devious Maids' Finale Arizona Mom of Missing Baby Released From Prison WH: LeBron's Move a 'Powerful Statement' Proposed Bill to Regulate NY Costumed Characters Raw: Australia Hosts Annual Beer Can Regatta Death Toll Tops 100 As Israel Offense Continues Diaz and Segel Strip Off for 'Sex Tape' Raw: Protesters, Israeli Security Forces Clash Man Flees Police in World Cup Scalping Scheme More Immigrants Detained Along Rio Grande Chimp-attack Victim Lobbies Congress Argentina to Face Germany in World Cup Final Robot Writes Jewish Torah Scroll Downside of Low Mortgage Rates? Less Selling Children Face Deportation Without Attorneys
NDN Video
Cleveland welcomes home LeBron Houston Killer Collapses in Court When Read Capital Murder Charges for Allegedly Killing Family of Six Worst Valet Ever Wrecks $500K Lamborghini Glee Star Becca Tobin's Boyfriend Matt Bendik Found Dead in Hotel Aerial fish restocking in Utah ScarJo Channels Marilyn Monroe Obama Responds to Hecklers on Immigration Tiny Hamsters Who Ate Burritos are Back for a Tiny Hedgehog's Party Watch Kelly Ripa Get Soaked! 'Referee' Hands Out Yellow Cards for Social Faux Pas in NYC 2014 Emmy Nominees: 8 Snub Shockers Emma Watson Is Va-Va-Voom in Valentino 7 Infamous Sports Blowouts Argentina tops Holland in World Cup semifinals News flush: Japanese toilet exhibition making a splash Emmy Nominations: What to Watch For 'Game of Thrones' Leads 66th Emmy Awards Nominations Photographic 'Proof' That LeBron Is Leaving Miami - @TheBuzzeronFOX Elephant Pool Party at The Oregon Zoo Must-See! Berry and Fallon Form Human Hamster Wheel
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
  • -

     

    March 12, 2010

activity