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Grey Matter


Coasting Along

Where to start when so much has been going on? I guess at the very beginning of a week that will live in c2c infamy.

On July 1st, Art Bell announced that he was retiring again. This news didn't shock me, or upset me. I pretty much had the feeling that Art would retire after the baby was born. Although, I do not believe that was the only reason for his retirement. One of the reasons I think was the retirement of his good friend and President of Premiere Radio, Kraig Kitchin. Retirement or something more sinister, depending who you talk to. You can find out more about Kitchin's retirement here.

My feeling is that the new President probably tried to get Bell to sign some sort of contract, guaranteeing him hosting for a specific time frame, which he refused to do and then quit or was told that he would not be allowed to continue without one.

Another reason I think for the somewhat spur of the moment retirement was a story that came out on 7/4/07. He had to know it was coming out because they had obviously contacted him for comment. If you never realized what a heartless, selfish bastard Art is, then read it. It is no reflection on his show, but it is a reflection on him as a person.

Bell says, "I guess I wasn't ready to apologize for something I didn't know I had done. I'm not the kind of person who abandons people, and I didn't think I had abandoned them."

Sorry Art, but that shows exactly how self centered you are. Any person who went through a divorce as a child could tell you just how abandoned they would feel if their father just left, never to contact them again, no matter the reason. Now you have the nerve to say how much family means to you? Why don't you try mending your other family ties as well, if that were a true statement? Explain to your son and daughter how you ignored them, as though they didn't exist for 40 years, but suddenly you are a great believer in family. BTW, what ever happened to Art Jr? I haven't heard him mentioned in reference to Art's family in years. Art is a great believer in family if it is convenient for him, is my guess.

Yes, I am fed up with Art Bell. I know his kind all too well.

The next big story was how the Art Bell retirement was to be handled. As we now know, c2c live was canceled and Ian was sent back to cover Saturday night on c2c am. This made no sense to me because Ian's show was popular and picking up lots of new affiliates. I don't claim to know much of anything about the radio business, but canceling a show that was doing well and picking up affiliates seems wrong to me. Then again, I guess you wouldn't want it to become more popular than the week night show.

Noory will be doing the first Sunday of each month. Ugggh.

Rebroadcasts and guest hosts will reign the rest of the Sundays. Let's hope there are more guest hosts than rebroadcasts, unless they replay the great Art Bell shows from the 1990s.

As if the c2c audience had not already been kicked in the teeth by Bell's retirement, they kicked streamlink members and extra time, by sending out an email of the impending doom of the c2c message boards on July 12th. Not even a full week of advanced notice. What are the message boards to be replaced with? A static newsletter, with their take on the shows, which can't be disputed in a public forum, at least not on the c2c site.

Although I rarely posted to the c2c boards in recent times, they hold a special place in my heart. I started posting to the official boards back when it was the Art Bell Show and was on a BBS, rather than the internet. Many of the new fans are so young as to not even know what a BBS is, but really, it was, at the time, a great thing. In more modern times, I met Tim Binnall at the c2c message boards, so if not for them, I would not be writing this column right now. I might have never met Tim, which means I might have also given up on my blog and not be writing for UFO magazine either. If not for the c2c message boards my life might be very different, but I think it would have been more boring and I would feel more alone in my weirdness.

Hey, maybe that is why they are shutting down the boards? They spawned Tim Binnall, Khyron and I. Maybe it really was just too risky to keep them going.

Then there is the question of who is to blame for shutting down the message boards. I don't really believe Noory can piss without the network telling him where and how to do it, so it can't completely be Noory. Still, after his freak out about the Fantastic Forum, I think he probably asked the network if he could shut them down. At the very least, Premiere looked them over and decided they needed to be shut down and Noory didn't lift a finger to stop them. Why would he? He wasn't much better liked there than at the FF.

The message that popped up for the message boards after they were closed down said:

The Coast Riders Message Board is now closed. Thank you for your past contributions to this forum. We look forward to hearing your continued thoughts about the program via email and Fast Blast.

What crap! I don't even have to be a streamlink member to email or fast blast, nor can I interact with other streamlink members by using those, so how exactly does that replace the message boards?

It doesn't replace them, nor does anyone involved with c2c want them replaced. I suppose you really can't blame them. Who would really want to provide a message board where people mostly just complained about them? Especially if you are not willing to consider their criticism and use it to improve your show? You wouldn't.

They can say they are interested in your thoughts about the program, but obviously, they really aren't. They don't give a rat's ass about what any of us think. Mostly they seem to be able to rely on a captive audience, prison inmates, truck drivers and others who are working late at night and have no choice but to listen to the radio.

Given the captive audience, c2c can probably continue to coast along without ever improving or changing and it likely will.

In closing, I would like to welcome all the Coast Rider refugees that have joined theusofe; it is nice to have you aboard!

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