Monday, December 22, 2014


Bee-otch of the Day honors are awarded Monday through Thursday, Bee-otch of the Week is awarded Friday on



Since 1999, has been handing out the Bee-otch of the Day. Then, we choose the Bee-otch of the Week and then, the Bee-otch of the Month. Now, we get to choose the Bee-otch of the Year for 2014.

Our definition of Bee-otch is simple: an idiot who does something stupid and adds nothing positive to civilization. Since 1999, 11 unique individuals have been handed this prestigious award for doing something stupid. Former president George W. Bush is the all-time biggest Bee-otch, with six Bee-otch of the Year Awards under his belt.

This year, 13 people are eligible for Bee-otch of the Year. Normally, we just hand out the nods and take it from there. But, since we think we have an all-out winner, we'll simply hand it out day.

So, without further adieu...



Freedom made headlines when the West Virginian chemical company dumped 7,500 gallons of a coal cleaner from a leaky tank that affected 300,000 residents of Charleston, the state's largest city. Not long after the spill, Freedom filed for bankruptcy so taxpayers could pay for their mishap.


Manning was supposed to be a heavy contender to give his Broncos a Super Bowl win this year, but ended up choking to the Seahawks. Doesn't matter, anyway, since he's an outspoken Republican who makes millions per year and is even pals with "Papa" John Schnatter, the pizza king who screwed over his employees over Obamacare.

The Kochs made headlines this year when their Americans For Prosperity aired a series of ads featuring a woman named Julie Boonstra who had leukemia. She claimed that the Affordable Healthcare Act cost her more money when in reality, it SAVED her money. Boonstra's husband has ties with the Republicans, hence their asskissing of the Kochs.


The long-time owner of the Los Angeles Clippers basketball team made headlines this year when recordings made between him and "business partner" V. Stiviano revealed that he should not own a business where there's a lot of African Americans in his employ. Of course, the NBA banned him for life and his family ended up selling the Clippers to Microsoft exec Steve Ballmer for $2 billion.

The Fort Myers, FL CBS station aired a news piece about a father who took his nine-year-old daughter to a Five Finger Death Punch concert and she was let on stage to yell "BURN MOTHERFUCKER BURN!" Basically, the piece attacked the band for their "vulgarity" towards children. OK, so Miley Cyrus, a skanky-ass slut who gets nude in front of sex offenders while riding a wrecking ball is good for kids while an underrated heavy metal band who has raised awareness for homeless troops is bad. Well played, WINK.


Last year, Balyo was a well-loved radio personality on Grand Rapids Christian radio station WCSG 91.3. But, his fans were shocked when he was arrested at a Christian music festival in Gaylord last Summer. It was discovered that the Jesus jock had molested two 11-year-old boys in two hotels in Kalamazoo and Battle Creek. Now, he's serving a 40-year sentence for the molestation of the two boys plus possessing child pornography.

Read at your own discretion.

What fueled this article was the fact that WCCC in Hartford, the radio station that helped to launch Howard Stern's career and others like Bob Rivers was sold to a Christian broadcaster earlier this year. To many, the death of WCCC symbolized the death of the small mom and pop radio station, especially in a larger city like Hartford. It's even worth noting that one of the most-evil broadcasters ever, Clear Channel, even changed their name to iHeartMedia. More like "iFartMedia".

The two Republicans ran some pretty stupid ads during the election season here in Michigan. Snyder aired several ads with his face hogging the screen talking about how Michigan's on the right track to recovery while Land simply showed that she was an asskisser to the Kochs. Thankfully, Land lost, but we've got four more years of the Stuffed Turd.

The brother of the worst president in 80 years came to Grand Rapids and is now hinting that he might run for the position in 2016. Heaven help us all.


The beloved comic got embroiled in controversy this year thanks to his rape charges being brought back into fruition in part due to comic Hannibal Burress and many more women claiming that he drugged and raped them. In all, over 20 women have claimed that Cosby sexually assaulted them. Since the charges were brought up, NBC pulled Cosby's new TV show in development, Netflix pulled a comedy special of his and TV Land yanked old reruns of The Cosby Show. His other TV shows, such as A Different WorldThe Bill Cosby ShowFat Albert and the Cosby Kids and I Spy are still on digital networks such as Bounce TV, Aspire and Retro TV.

Recently, the iconic newspaper trashed Howard Stern for comparing the hacks on Sony Pictures to 9/11. The paper called Howard a word his father constantly called him: an idiot. Howard has been very critical on foreign nations since 9/11, especially North Korea. 

Well, there you have it: the nominations for Bee-otch of the Year 2014. So, who's your winner? Let's countdown the top 3.



Congratulations, asshole! I hope you burn in hell for what you did to those poor children, you sick pile of shit. I hope you die in prison before your 40 years are up. I know that God will probably forgive you for what you did, but your fans and critics are a whole different story. You're just another Jebus freak feeding off the poor and misinformed who used their money to promote your habit of raping and hurting children. You sick fucker. It's assholes like you that prevent me from trusting any religious organization, and now, you've hurt WCSG's reputation. I hope there's no heaven for you. Burn in hell, you fake Jebus freak.


Got a Bee-otch to nominate? E-mail us @ All suggestions (except for me) are welcome!

Bee-otch of the Day Archives can be seen on!

Bee-otch of the Day is a production of, Grand Rapids' site for Stern, politics and more!

Thursday, December 18, 2014

12.18.14 Bee-otch of the Day: North Korea

Bee-otch of the Day honors are awarded Monday through Thursday, Bee-otch of the Week is awarded Friday on



Name: North Korea
Age: 69
Occupation: communist nation
Last Seen: Asia
Bee-otched For: canceling "The Interview"
Looks like movie goers won't be laughing on Christmas.

It has been announced that Sony is yanking "The Interview" from its Christmas release date after theatre chains refused to show it because of 9/11-style threats brought on by the so-called "Guardians of Peace".

The group's note read:



We will clearly show it to you at the very time and places "The Interview" be shown, including the premiere, how bitter fate those who seek fun in terror should be doomed to.

Soon all the world will see what an awful movie Sony Pictures Entertainment has made.

The world will be full of fear. Remember the 11th of September 2001.

We recommend you to keep yourself distant from the places at that time.

(If your house is nearby, you’d better leave.)

Whatever comes in the coming days is called by the greed of Sony Pictures Entertainment.

All the world will denounce the SONY."


Because of the group's threat, Carmike Cinemas, a chain that owns theatres in Battle Creek here in west Michigan and many more in northern Michigan - including the two big cineplexes in my old stomping ground of Traverse City - was the first to yank the premiere of the film. Other chains, Chinese-owned AMC, Regal, Cinemark, Cineplex Odeon and Loeks/Celebration Cinemas here in Grand Rapids also yanked the film. Sony even canceled the film's premiere in Los Angeles and canceled all appearances of the movie's stars, Seth Rogen (who directed the film) and James Franco.

In "The Interview", Rogen and Franco play two men out to kill Kim Jong-Un, the country's dictator. Because of the film centering around the demise of the reclusive leader, the GOP ended up hacking Sony's servers and posted copies of the film, plus several other future Sony releases, such as "Annie". They also posted emails from Sony execs and even a memo that stated that Alex Trebek was ready to walk off the set of Jeopardy! because of a stage mom.

Of course, the postponing of the movie's debut has left a lot of people with mixed emotions. Some think that Sony's bowing to the terrorists while others think that it's a good idea to protect moviegoers. The point is, it's better safe than sorry, even if North Korea supposedly doesn't have the know-how to blow up 3,000 theatres at once.

But let's remember this: "Team America: World Police" also mocked North Korea and its then-leader, Kim Jung-Il. No theatre was ever bombed, and I don't think any copies of the film's DVD ever exploded. Of course, this was 2004 when movies were sent to theatres in big, bulky 35mm rolls versus the hard drives that are sent out today. Yes, there's no scratches or splices in the films, but 1) it left a lot of projectionists out of work and 2) since digital projection is totally automated, it also means that theatres and the chains that they own them can be served from a central hub where everything is programmed.

It's not known if Sony plans to release the movie at a later time when our situation with North Korea is resolved, but there's many avenues to look at: they can release the film on home media or go with a smaller distributor. Maybe they can release it on 35mm, but it might be tough since some cinemas purged themselves of their old projectors. They need to think of something, especially since the film cost them $50 million to produce.

Undoubtedly, it will have an effect on moviegoers this holiday season also, since it was the only new comedy being released. Of course, most of the new releases are all family films, ie "Annie", "Night At the Museum" and "Into the Woods".

You see, Kim Jong-Un is nothing more than a big bully who wants to destroy America. It's a shame that we didn't go after North Korea when Bush was blasting away at Iraq since we all knew who had the oil. But NK had the weapons, which makes them the real evil. Now, they're the ones threatening America by simply telling us that making a movie that depicts the death of their ruthless leader is a big no-no. Even worse, it'll make studios make more and more shitty remakes and plotless superhero movies that only appeal to those with an IQ of room temperature.

Personally, if "The Interview" came out on Christmas, I'd make it a point to see it, especially if it was funny and good. Seth Rogan and Judd Apatow make very good movies and it's a shame that Sony is playing it safe these holidays.

Somewhere, Kirk Cameron is smiling.

Got a Bee-otch to nominate? E-mail us @ All suggestions (except for me) are welcome!

Bee-otch of the Day Archives can be seen on!

Bee-otch of the Day is a production of, Grand Rapids' site for Stern, politics and more!

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

12.17.14 Bee-otch of the Day: New York Daily News

Bee-otch of the Day honors are awarded Monday through Thursday, Bee-otch of the Week is awarded Friday on



Name: New York Daily News
Age: 95
Occupation: newspaper
Last Seen: New York, NY
Bee-otched For: dissing Howard Stern
2015 will be a pivotal year for the King of All Media.

Beginning when he gets of winter vacation in a few weeks, Howard Stern will be getting up a little later. It was announced on Monday's show that he and SiriusXM have agreed to move his show to 7 a.m., feeling that he'll be less groggy in the morning. No word, however, if that means that it'll be actually 6:54 one day, 6:52 the next day or 6:58 the day after and so on (many board ops on his old stations would chuckle at that one).

But yesterday, Howard kinda wished that he didn't wake up at all.

He picked up his copy of the New York Daily News and was shocked to see his mug next to an image of the World Trade Towers being attacked with the caption "Hey, Howard... THIS IS 9/11, IDIOT!"

The paper was referring to Stern's rant on Monday regarding the recent hacks at Sony Pictures in Culver City where confidential company information was stolen, along with copies of several future films and even several e-mails that contained uses of racial slurs. Stern defended Sony, which owns Columbia and Tri-Star, claiming that the hacks were terrorist-based and was possibly masterminded by the North Korean government. This, of course is due to the upcoming Seth Rogan/James Franco film "The Interview" mocking the country and its dictator, Kim Jung-Un. Rogan and Franco were guests on the show, but have now canceled all future appearances because of the scandal.

On Tuesday's show, Stern attacked the paper and the article's writers for comparing him to 9/11 since he is a native New Yorker and has been adamant about the city he was born in, especially after that horrific day. He also launched into one of his infamous "I have one more year left on my contract" spiels. Since Howard will be 61 next month and many of his co-stars - like Robin Quivers and Fred Norris - are up there in age with him, time will only tell if he'll hang up the mic one last time, go back to terrestrial radio (after all, AGT has shown his clean side) or join a phone app like Slacker or Pandora. But with him going from four days a week and moving up to 7 a.m. next month, time will tell if the KOAM will continue to reign supreme in the morning or let SiriusXM rot without him.

Back to the article, personally, it's sad how the tabloids in New York operate at times. Of course, the Daily News is owned by Canadian billionaire Mort Zuckerman, who is a semi-regular on The McLaughlin Group on PBS (and yes, that show's still on the air and John McLaughlin, now 87 is still alive and feisty). Then again, it kinda makes me happy that I don't read the newspaper. Just today, I got a thing in the mail from the Grand Rapids Press talking about the paper being delivered to my door for $2 per week. Please. Do I want a paper that kisses the Devos family's ass on my doorstep and more trash I have to haul out every week? No thanks. I'd rather read it online for free. The point is, I think Howard oughta sue the paper for using his image to make him look stupid and comparing him to a catastrophic tragedy like 9/11. However, even though he has a point about defending Sony regarding them being attacked, bear in mind that the company was stupid for putting their movies online where people could hack into them. As somebody who has a cute photo of Kate Upton's ass and undervag as his laptop's background photo, I think that if you don't want your shit to be seen online, then don't fucking post it! I've posted shit that I wished I didn't post in the past, some jerks found it and I was the one getting into trouble for it.

Newspapers. No wonder why only old people read them.  

Got a Bee-otch to nominate? E-mail us @ All suggestions (except for me) are welcome!

Bee-otch of the Day Archives can be seen on!

Bee-otch of the Day is a production of, Grand Rapids' site for Stern, politics and more!

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

12.16.14 Bee-otch of the Day: John Balyo

Bee-otch of the Day honors are awarded Monday through Thursday, Bee-otch of the Week is awarded Friday on



Name: John Balyo
Age: 36
Occupation: former Christian radio host
Last Seen: in a penitentiary
Bee-otched For: officially going to rot in jail
It's two words that strikes fear in the hearts of all men: jury duty.

For two days last week, I had to do just that. It was the first time I served on a jury and it was a somewhat honorable experience. The case I dealt with had was child abuse. But, there was an absence of media covering the story.

Maybe it's because on the same day my defendant was charged, a bigger case was taken care of.

Federal judge Robert Holmes Bell ruled in District Court that former WCSG morning host John Balyo would be spending the next 40 years in prison for sexually assaulting two underage boys and possessing child pornography. The judge - the father of former pastor and author Rob Bell, who also was controversial in his decision to allow Grand Rapids' strip club ban - called Balyo a wolf in sheep's clothing. Many in law enforcement claimed that Balyo had the power to strike again, but thanks to the Department of Homeland Security's investigation of his pimp, Ronald Mosier, it led to the investigation of Balyo's double life.

It was discovered that Balyo had two sexual experiences with two different boys in two hotel rooms. When Balyo's secret sex life was discovered, it led to the discovery of a storage locker loaded with child porn, bondage kits, clipped obituaries of children, whips, chains, handcuffs and other items all belonging to Balyo.

Balyo worked at WCSG and its now-defunct sister station, Way FM, all owned by Cornerstone University. He also participated in many mission trips and was even going to be a father with a newly-married wife. Now, the unborn child will not have a father, but all of Balyo's finances will be in the hands of his now-ex-wife. He was arrested last summer at a Christian music festival in Gaylord after authorities discovered Balyo's records with Mosier.

You know, I find it funny that for years, many members of the religious right in Grand Rapids and west Michigan tried to get Howard Stern off the airwaves of WKLQ (now Nash 94.5) all because they thought he degraded women. Of course, their wish came true when Howard was demoted to WBBL (then at 1340, now WJRW) and then yanked off the air altogether when parent Citadel ordered all their stations to part ways with the King of All Media. For many of these Jebus freaks, WCSG was their refuge. They even gave the station money to keep them on the air since they are a non-commercial station. But the fact is, a lot of Balyo's paychecks went to feed his uncontrollable desires to rape young boys. When I heard about Balyo's rape charges, part of me did a Nelson Muntz impersonation: "HA HA!" As Trent Reznor once said, "bow down before the one you serve, you're gonna get what you deserve".

It also reminds me of a man in Grand Rapids radio I once trusted who ended up attacking me on a popular message board. He put me on blast for allegedly mocking his now-ex-wife's rape. Yet, he was Facebook friends with Balyo himself. It wouldn't shock me if he was friends with him in real life. Talk about double standards.

You see, John Balyo is a monster, plain and simple. He was a fucked-up asshole who used God to rape small children and I'm damn happy that Judge Bell threw the book at him. By the time he's out of jail, he'll be 76 years old, IF he's still alive. Personally, since he's a fat fuck, I hope he dies in jail and ends up burning in hell.

But if God is forgiving enough to John Balyo, giving him 40 female virgins is punishment enough.

Got a Bee-otch to nominate? E-mail us @ All suggestions (except for me) are welcome!

Bee-otch of the Day Archives can be seen on!

Bee-otch of the Day is a production of, Grand Rapids' site for Stern, politics and more!

Monday, December 15, 2014

12.15.14 Hero of the Day: Bill Bonds

Bee-otch of the Day honors are awarded Monday through Thursday, Bee-otch of the Week is awarded Friday on



Name: Bill Bonds
Age: was 82
Occupation: legendary news anchor and commentator
Last Seen: in the great beyond
Awarded For: being the best news anchor in Michigan history
This has not been a good week for Michigan broadcast legends.

In just one week, 58-year broadcast legend Merlin Dumbrille of WTCM Traverse City and Les Root, whose voice was heard on Flint radio for decades both died. Now, the biggest nail in the coffin has been hammered down shut.

For years, Bill Bonds was THE Walter Cronkite of Detroit. He could have been just another forgettable newscaster who moved from market to market, reading off a teleprompter, but he added a true honesty to news anchoring that's now sadly, a part of the past.

Like many successful TV news anchors, Bonds first worked in radio. But in 1963, he started working at WXYZ-TV as a booth announcer. Around that time, WXYZ, along with other ABC-owned-and-operated stations developed their own news departments. Bonds eventually made his way in front of the camera and was often lauded for his reporting of the 1967 riots. However, in 1968, he moved to Los Angeles to work at KABC-TV. It was in L.A. where Bonds even made an appearance as himself in Return of the Planet of the Apes. However, being a Detroit native, he missed The Motor City, so he moved back in 1971. Just two years later, WXYZ was the top-rated news station in Detroit. Not shabby for a network, ABC, that was a fifth wheel in the ratings throughout most of the 50s and 60s, but rose to prominence in the 70s.

In 1975, Bonds was awarded one of the largest contracts in the history of local television: a million dollars per year, per life. People tuned in to Bonds not just for the news, but for his adventurous views on various topics during his commentaries. The death of John Lennon in 1980, seen above, was one of his most-famous commentaries and with school shootings making headlines today, his commentary from all those years ago still stands tall today.

Bonds was known for standing up for his viewers and often issued challenges for many he felt needed to have their sorry ass kicked. Detroit mayor Coleman Young was one; Bonds reportedly issued a fist fight with him on the air. Utah senator Orrin Hatch even left his set during an interview. He interviewed many famous faces in his career: Bill Clinton, Lee Iacocca and Joe Dumars to name a few. When Bill Bonds talked, people listened.

However, Bill had his demons. He was left go from WXYZ-TV in 1995 after a drunk driving arrest. Bill fought with the bottle for years, but thanks to counseling used his downfall to teach others how to cope. He did bounce back to do a show for Fox 2 WJBK in the late 90's, but ultimately retired from television news soon after. In the 2000's and beyond, he was a spokesperson for local furniture store chain Gardner-White.

In 2008, he hosted one last newscast for WXYZ, marking the station's 60th anniversary. He co-hosted it with long time partner John Kelly and wife Marilyn Turner, who handled weather duties.

Sadly, Bill Bonds' health has been far from perfect for years and died at his home near Detroit at the age of 82 on Saturday. True, he had his imperfections and even a few bloopers along the way, he told it as it was for many Michiganders. While newsmen come and go, Bill loved Detroit and the passion he showed doing the news on Channel 7 for decades showed. In the days of cookie cutter journalism where everything is rip and read and there's no commentary, plus the fact that if it doesn't trend, it's not news, it shows that losing Bill Bonds is definitely the end of an era. I sometimes wished that we had more news people who had the balls to say what's on his or her mind. Hell, maybe I should do the news myself since I've been writing these blogs for 15 years. But, since most TV stations are owned by companies that try to affix their newscasts to their template (just look at Gannett and even WXYZ's current owner, Scripps), it'll never happen.

But, Bill had a wonderful life. He was colorful and it helped him become a legend. By the way, it was rumored for years that he was the inspiration for Will Ferrell's Anchorman, but that was Mort Crim of rival WDIV channel 4, the market's NBC station.

But one day, Mort, now 79, will be paying Bill a visit. 

Got a Bee-otch to nominate? E-mail us @ All suggestions (except for me) are welcome!

Bee-otch of the Day Archives can be seen on!

Bee-otch of the Day is a production of, Grand Rapids' site for Stern, politics and more!

Thursday, December 11, 2014

12.11.14 Bee-otch of the Day (and de facto Bee-otch of the Week): Kirk Cameron

Bee-otch of the Day honors are awarded Monday through Thursday, Bee-otch of the Week is awarded Friday on



Name: Kirk Cameron
Age: 44
Occupation: Jebus freak actor
Last Seen: ??
Bee-otched For: making the worst. movie. ever.
Nope, not everybody's a hero this week.

When Thomas Edison invented the moving picture in the late 1880's, he knew that his invention would allow people to create wonderful, moving works of art. And when it came to the holidays, it was no exception.

In the 12+ decades we've been acquainted with movies, every holiday season, we think of the bell ringing while Charlie got his wings, or poor Ralphie shooting his eye out. For others, it was Kevin McAllister trying Old Spice for the first time or Cousin Eddie screaming "SHITTER'S FULL!" to Clark Griswold.

But yes, the holidays have given us their duds, too. Remember a little 1964 film called Santa Claus Conquers the Martians? For years, it was considered not just one of the worst films of all time, but THE worst movie of all time. Thankfully, this disasterpiece is now in the public domain, so anybody could watch this laughable dreck anytime without being forced to pay to see it legally.

But, good news for you Pia Zadora fans out there! SCCTM is no longer the worst film ever made! As a matter of fact, it's a film that's playing in theatres.

And its star is the artist formerly known as Mike Seaver.

Yep! It's Kirk Cameron's Saving Christmas, which was quietly released a month ago and has only made $2.6 million in the box office so far. In the film, Cameron talks about why Christ needs to be at the center of Christmas and why we shouldn't say "Happy Holidays" and blah, blah, blah...

Since its release, KCSC hasn't just been a box office dud (or just making a tiny profit since the film supposedly has a tiny budget), but it's been a critical disaster, too. Rotten Tomatoes gave the film a flat 0% rating; critics on the site have called the film "hard to stomach", "thrown together" and "unfocused".  Audiences haven't been so kind, either. now calls KCSC the worst movie of all time, beating out 2010's Birdemic: Shock and Terror.

Cameron himself took to Facebook, asking fans to try to bump the film up on Rotten Tomatoes and IMDB. Well, that didn't work. Now, he's claiming that there's an atheist conspiracy to shut his precious movie down.

So, what is it with Jesus freaks making films for Jesus freaks that are nothing short of awful? There are some good religious films out there, but sadly, when it comes to the gun-toting, Rush Limbaugh-listening, gay-hating Christian who tries to get around Matthew 19:24, well, Cameron's movie is right for you.

But, this is why we have multiplexes, right? 

Oh, and BTW, since Cameron is the only Bee-otch of the Day this week, he's defacto Bee-otch of the Week, too.


Got a Bee-otch to nominate? E-mail us @ All suggestions (except for me) are welcome!

Bee-otch of the Day Archives can be seen on!

Bee-otch of the Day is a production of, Grand Rapids' site for Stern, politics and more!

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

12.10.14 Hero of the Day: James Niggemeyer

Bee-otch of the Day honors are awarded Monday through Thursday, Bee-otch of the Week is awarded Friday on



Name: James Niggemeyer
Age: 41
Occupation: former police officer
Last Seen: Columbus, OH
Awarded For: being a friend to rock 'n roll
When I gave the Hero of the Day to both John Lennon and Dimebag Darrell on Monday, I should have shared the honor with the man who helped save the lives of 400 souls at the concert where the Damageplan guitarist died.

That man was James Niggemeyer, who killed the lunatic that killed the legendary Pantera guitarist.

That evening on December 8th, 2004, Niggemeyer was just doing his normal duties as a police officer, when he got the call that a man had opened fire at the Allrosa Villa in Columbus. He arrived at the concert venue 10 minutes later. While most of his fellow officers entered the front of the Allrosa later on, Niggemeyer went through the back door and shot the perpetrator, Nathan Gale to death while he was in a struggle with Vinnie Paul's drum tech. Gale used a 9mm Beretta that his mother gave him as a gift for his service as a Marine. However, he developed serious mental problems and started to believe in untrue things such as his claim that Pantera ripped off his songs.

Many consider Niggemeyer a hero for selflessly killing Nathan Gale, but despite the sick and twisted things that he did, Gale was still a human being. Because of that evening, James was forced to be reassigned as a detective three years after the shooting because he had developed post traumatic stress disorder and severe anxiety. In an interview with the Columbus Dispatch, he said “I found out real quickly that you don’t have any control over your brain, it’s going to do what it’s going to do. Cops are regular human beings. Things affect us the same way they affect everyday citizens. We relive it and have to deal with the aftermath.”

Niggemeyer remains as an employee to the city of Columbus, but not as a cop. Despite being a hero, he claims that murdering Nathan Gale certainly did not help his career one bit. Because of the events of ten years ago, James is still in counseling.

However, James has made some good friends, including Rick Cautela, the owner of the Allrosa Villa where Dimebag was killed. Despite losing some respect from the rock community for allowing Gale in, the Allrosa is still going strong, hosting five concerts per month. The club even celebrated its 40th year in business. A month after the horrific incident, Cautela invited Niggemeyer on stage to a huge amount of applause as the club reopened. He's also made good friends with Andy Halk, whose brother was killed by Gale during the concert. The two are in a fantasy football league and occasionally come to the club to see a concert.

When James Niggemeyer walked through the back door of the Allrosa Villa that fateful night, he didn't know if he would come out alive. He did, but he was a changed man. There's many cops who worked on the beat for decades and never once did they had to fire their weapon. James had to, but in the end, he saved the lives of 400 people, and because of that, the rock music community owes people like him a great big debt.

I don't think many of us will know James personally, but think of this: today, many people on the police force will not survive the day. They will be shot to death, killed in a fire or lose their life in an auto accident. But, who knows? Many of those cops will be heroes, too, for using their lives to help others.

Personally, if you're in line at a fast food place and you see a cop ordering food, I think it'll be a good idea to pay for his meal. These people risk their lives to help others and without them, this world will be out of order. So, give these people a hand, will ya?

And if you're reading this, James, thank you.

Got a Bee-otch to nominate? E-mail us @ All suggestions (except for me) are welcome!

Bee-otch of the Day Archives can be seen on!

Bee-otch of the Day is a production of, Grand Rapids' site for Stern, politics and more!

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

12.9.14 Hero of the Day: Merlin Dumbrille

Bee-otch of the Day honors are awarded Monday through Thursday, Bee-otch of the Week is awarded Friday on



Name: Merlin Dumbrille
Age: was 81
Occupation: former radio and TV personality
Last Seen: in the great beyond
Awarded For: being a true broadcast legend
When people think of the name "Merlin", they might think of a magician.

Merlin Dumbrille was just that in northern Michigan. He might have never pulled a rabbit out of a hat or made himself disappear, but he had the power to make the airwaves come to life up in my homeland of Traverse City, MI. He was just eight years old when he was excited to see a tower being built in Traverse City and told himself that someday, he wanted to play a part in that.

And he did, for 58 years.

The son of a piano tuner and movie theatre projectionist, "Zeke" as he was nicknamed had the pleasure of growing up with that little 250-watt radio station, WTCM. Since two of the pianos his father tuned were in the Anderson Building downtown (i.e. The Camera Shop next to the Opera House), it was mere fate that the building also was the original home of WTCM. Zeke was enthralled watching the station's DJs spin giant 78 RPM platters and interacting with the audience. Les Biederman, WTCM's young, 30-year-old founder saw little Zeke's nose pressed on the window to the studio, and asked if he had liked what he saw. Zeke said yes, and Les then told Zeke to come back to him when he was a little older. Almost a decade later, he stood by his promise.

In 1951, Merlin officially started at WTCM, although he left briefly to fight in the Korean War. He came back, and handled the night shift on WTCM. In 1954, Les signed on TV station WPBN channel 7 and five years later, WTOM-TV 4. Until 1963, Les refused to allow TV 7&4 to sign on until 12 noon, thinking that his own station would diminish the audience for his radio stations. But with Today being a top show, he finally caved in, and assigned Merlin to handle the 7:25 and 8:25 news inserts, which he did until 1974. At 7&4, Merlin also handled weather and even worked in the control room.

But it was WTCM's long-running Farm and Orchard Time that became Merlin's signature. He was assigned the station's Farm Director in 1964 and hosted the program for 45 years. Les Biederman began the show when WTCM signed on in 1941 knowing how important the agricultural industry of northern Michigan was and would continue to do so well into the future.

Over the years, WTCM grew. In the 1960's, the station boosted to 1,000 watts and in 1982, it moved from 1400 AM (now WLJN) to 580 and boosted to 2,500 watts. Now, WTCM broadcasts with 50,000 watts daytime. WTCM was an NBC affiliate for decades (albeit a brief stint with Mutual in the 1940's), then it flipped to ABC in the 1980's and recently, it flipped again to Fox News. WTCM also has seen its fair share of formats: MOR, CHR, AC, country and for the past 23 years, news-talk. While WTCM - like most AM stations - aim themselves towards angry old white dudes who hate Obama, Merlin was there for the ride for 79% of the station's history.

He officially retired from WTCM Radio in 2009. In an interview, he claimed that it was time to smell the roses and enjoy life like he should. He and his wife packed up their RV and toured the country, but would come back to WTCM to help co-host Ron Jolly's morning show on Fridays. However, when Merlin retired, WTCM decided to eliminate Farm and Orchard Time from the schedule.

But now, Merlin's calm, soothing voice has been silenced forever.

Last Friday, WTCM announced at 9 a.m. that Merlin Dumbrille had passed away after a long battle with prostate cancer at the age of 81. The station took calls for several hours and even bumped the first hour of Rush Limbaugh to play a tribute to Merlin. It was a nice gesture for a station that Merlin called home for nearly six decades.

In a radio market where personalities come and go, there's people like Jack O'Malley, Terri Ray and others who love the area too much to even think about leaving. Yes, They could move elsewhere and make more money, but they realize that there's more to life than money, and that's Merlin Dumbrille. Merlin was born in Traverse City and died in Traverse City. That's what he wanted, and I think his fans all agreed. He was polite and gentle, unlike most of the angry old white men that WTCM airs all day. Some who knew Merlin claimed that he never judged people, which made him one of a kind. Now that he's gone, radio will never be quite the same.

Thanks, Zeke, if I had land, I'd plant a tree in your memory.


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