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Archive for February, 2015

Trading Places: BRIAN WILLIAMS and JON STEWART Switch Jobs? by Elizabeth Searle

jsmagesI feel bad about Brian Williams. Not that he didn’t seriously screw up.  But having seen him perform a genial professional-level Stand-Up Comedy routine at the Nantucket Film Festival, I understand why the natural-born raconteur with the movie-star looks has privately pined to replace Jay Leno.

fcmagesSo why not replace Jon Stewart instead? I feel bad about Jon Stewart too. No one can truly replace the comic genius who has in fact become the ‘most trusted’ and truthiest name in news. But Stewart in recent years has seemed to pine for a more ‘serious’ role in policy debate, delivering earnest speeches and directing the solemn documentary ROSEWATER.

In terms of actual interest in and passion for the News, Jon Stewart seems to me to possess more gravitas than starstruck Brian Williams. And Williams– who did stumble his stand-up act onto sacred ground when he puffed up his own role in a real military mission– has always had stars in his eyes.bwages-1

He climbed up the network news ladder partly on the strength of looks and charm rather than the kind of hard-won reporters’ chops that once elevated Edward R. Murrow or Walter Cronkite– seasoned reporters with less glamor but more gravitas than boyish Williams– into anchor chairs.

On a practical note, NBC ratings would soar if Jon Stewart took the lead anchor chair. Brian Williams might fare less well in Stewart’s ‘hot seat’– but that’s Show Biz.

(photos: adage.com, Salon.com, fcm images; GoogleImages)

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What a game– I am not even a football fan but this year’s Superbowl was a thriller. A great game like Superbowl 49 captures the caprices of life itself.16912792-mmmain

Tom Brady– triumphing at age 37 after a tough season– showed the seasoned strength of a true and unflappable pro. As the HuffPost noted:
“It didn’t matter how much air was in the balls, Brady was unstoppable when the pressure was strongest.”

Yet the game was won by bold young rookie Malcolm Butler and his brilliant last-minute interception. As the Boston Globe put it:
“The final addition to the Patriots’ season-long turnover bag should be bronzed and preserved in a prominent place for all eternity. That’s if the ball can ever be pried from Malcolm Butler’s heroic hands, of course.”

Only minutes before, however, 25 year-old Butler seemed doomed to be blamed for a ‘miracle catch’ that nearly sealed the deal for the SeaHawks.BUT474917

Such are the sudden reversals of fortune in football as in life. Dazed and grass-stained, Butler pointed to the heavens shortly after his life changed in an instant.

But with all due respect to divine intervention, this divine interception involved more than grace and luck.

Once he’d calmed down enough to explain, Malcolm Butler noted that he’d quickly deduced from the Seahawk’s formation and from the way the quarterback held his head ‘still’ that they were going to throw.

So young Butler kept his eye on the ball and side-stepped into sports history.

(photos: boston.com, patriots.com, GoogleImages)

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