Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Bloopers Revisited

In June of last year I wrote about a series of Radio Blooper LPs that Jubilee records put out in the 1960s. I was mostly focused on the LPs, and as always on the etymology. I think I neglected their author Kermit Schaefer and the rest of his media platform. He did guest spots playing clips of bloopers on the Mike Douglas Show. A movie version also entitled Pardon My Blooper was released in 1974. Most interestingly he did a series of books. You might think at first that books don't lend themselves very well to the genre.. but Kermit wrote half a dozen books to prove that for at least some people.. it did.
The series petered out in the early 1970s.. At first I thought the fad burned it self out but no. Kermit was already well into a long career as a TV and radio producer by the time these books say daylight. He was born in 1923, he was 56 when he died in 1979. Dick Clark picked up the Bloopers baton and did a series of TV shows blatantly ripping off the work of Kermit Schaefer. But Clark knew this perfectly well and usually carried a dedication to Kermit by name. More here.

In print, his Bloopers rarely cite the station on where they occurred, and more rarely who uttered them. They never cite when they occurred. Despite that, I generally think these are real. In that vein.. I'll quote a few here. Here I limit my selections to those that have call letters. Most of them can be cleanly divided into categories of incidental puns and mispronounced words. All in all not exactly hysterical.
"'A topless go-go dancer was in costume driving home at night, near Phoenix Arizona. She was busted by police for indecent exposure and for missing a lens out of her glasses.
WGN-AM Chicago

"...Don't forget, tonight at nine, our special guest... because it is.. .will be.. I forgot."
-WIOD-AM Miami, FL Alan Courtney

"Today, thousands cheered today as Pope Pius the 12th stood at his bedroom window in St. Peters Square and exposed himself."
WBAL-AM Baltimore

"Well streakers are at it again... this time at a local football game... I can't for the world of me figure out this type of behavior... I guess it's their way of showing they're nuts."
-Larry Glick WBZ-AM Boston.

"Hurry up folks and deposit your letters now. We'll be waiting for your droppings in the box..."
WFIL-AM Philadelphia

"Reigers furniture store features the finest, most durable furniture available. Shop at Reigers, where we have been servicing the housewife for twenty-six years."
WBAT-AM Marion, IN
He really immersed himself in the universe of Bloopers. He did Blooper books not at all related to broadcasting such as "Typo Bloopers" that was all about print and not at all about broadcasting. He did the Bedside Book of Celebrity Bloopers, Blooper Blowups, Blooper Tube, Bloopers Bloopers Bloopers and on and on and on.