Erik Deckers
Laughing Stalk Syndicate
Copyright 2008

Many big-city radio news programs are becoming shadows of their former selves, getting their news, including traffic reports, from national sources, not local reporters. They've lost the very essence of what made local news so important and relevant 30 years ago.

I would love to see a return to local radio news. Even better, an ultra-localized news service that gives me the news I want, about things that affect only me. I could listen to it on the way to work each morning.

Good morning, this is WERIK Radio, bringing you the best in local news, sports, traffic, and weather for Erik Deckers. I'm Carl Bormann, with traffic and sports from Judy Capstan.

Topping local news this morning, local business Slipstone Manufacturing announced they will soon add 400 new jobs in the next six months. While this means more economic stimulus for the area, this will add 400 new cars to get in your way, while you’re driving to work.

In other news, your neighbor’s dog has crapped on your lawn for a third day in a row. Staring, heavy sighs, and other nonverbal hints have gone unnoticed, and your neighborhood association did not respond to repeated requests for an interview.

In financial news, your wife says household finances look solid. However, none of your lottery numbers hit this week, which means one more week of fighting the daily commute.

Meanwhile, high-level banking officials have finally stopped rolling around in the big piles of money Congress gave them, and have resumed business as usual. . . assuming business as usual means giving billions in year-end bonuses to their executives, taking luxury corporate retreats, and according to a recent New York Times column, using the bailout money to buy smaller failing banks.

When reminded of the millions of families whose livelihood and home ownership relied on the banks using the money to solve the country's economic woes, one bank official said, "Give people money? That's not our job. They should have kept their money, instead of wasting it on food and clothes for their kids."

In education news, your oldest daughter continues to excel in her studies, although she’s having some difficulty with fractions. A local home schooling expert, your wife, says that further effort on your daughter’s part is needed.

“She just needs to concentrate a little more,” said your wife. “She’s not allowed to listen to her iPod while she’s studying from now on.” Meanwhile, your youngest daughter finished another I Can Read book, focusing on the short U sound, while your son can recognize his letters and numbers.

Let's send it over to Judy for a look at our traffic situation.

Thanks, Jack. Traffic is painfully slow this morning on your way to work, thanks to some jerk in a green Ford Explorer going 10 miles under the speed limit, yakking on his cell phone.

Local radar doesn't detect any incoming missiles, so it looks like you'll be stuck behind him all the way to I-465. To make matters worse, there's an accident just a few miles south of the exit, and the highway is getting backed up with rubberneckers and the morbidly curious hoping to see some blood and guts. You're better off sticking to the back roads and hoping Green Explorer takes the highway.

In local sports, your neighbor’s son’s high school football team, the long-suffering Panthers, lost their game this past weekend, against area rival, the Central Cougars. The loss can be pinned directly on your neighbor’s son’s so-called quarterbacking efforts, whose feeble pass attempts were slapped down harder than a frat boy in a lesbian bar. However, many hometown experts, including your neighbor, believe the loss was the result of a poorly-called game, and some possible collusion and bribery by the opposing coach.

"Just wait 'til next year," said your insufferable neighbor.

In professional sports, the Colts continue to struggle, but die-hard fans believe this is just a phase, and the Colts can still make the playoffs with a wild card spot.

And the Indiana Pacers lost yet again last night, after a stunning blah blah blah you hate basketball.

Finally, some news from the lighter side to cheer up your morning. It seems that the jerk in the green Explorer has just been pulled over and ticketed for impeding the flow of traffic. Be sure to honk and wave as you drive past.

We're going to take a commercial break, and when we come back, we'll have a 20 minute rant on the evils of greedy bank executives who refuse to help families with problem home loans, yet beg for mercy and go crying to Congress like a baby to its mama whenever they get into a little boo-boo of their own. Have a super day!

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