Thursday, October 29, 2015

10.29.15 Bee-otch of the Day: National Cherry Festival


Bee-otch of the Day honors are awarded Monday through Thursday, Bee-otch of the Week is awarded Friday on Chuck69.com.



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Name: National Cherry Festival
Age: 89
Occupation: yearly excuse to attract tourism
Last Seen: Traverse City, MI
Bee-otched For: wasting taxpayer money on hurting veterans

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For years, one of the top draws to Traverse City's National Cherry Festival are the Blue Angels.

The Navy aircraft is notorious for bringing thousands of people to Grand Traverse Bay every year with their stunts and high-flying antics while the people on the ground have the sounds of Kenny Loggins' "Danger Zone" imagining in their heads. With its parades, greasy food, shitty concert series and cherries flown in from foreign lands because the actual harvest isn't even for another month as-is, The Cherry Fest is known for turning Traverse City, pop. 15,000 into a mini Detroit every July.

But now, a group of military vets are begging the Cherry Festival to end their relationship with the Blue Angels. The reason? PTSD, or post-traumatic stress disorder.

The vets all claim that the loud sounds of the planes help to bring out the memories of past wars - such as the fake war in Iraq - which have all caused them to have experiences with anxiety and other traumatic difficulties. There is no cure for PTSD and the thought of thousands of people coming all the way to TC to enjoy what some refer to as one of our biggest wastes of taxpayer funds is pure travesty.

The Blue Angels come to TC on even-numbered years, which means that they're due in 2016.

Look, there's a myriad of things TC should do instead of pissing off our vets. A woman wrote to the Northern Express several months ago stating the same thing the vets want, and it's for the Cherry Festival to knock it off with the Blue Angels. True, they were cool years ago, but since then, we've fought three fake wars over oil with thousands of casualties and thousands more coming home with severe depression and other disorders. The Cherry Festival needs to find something to replace the Blue Angels to make our vets happy.

But hey! At least TC is FINALLY getting a Costco!

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Wednesday, October 28, 2015

10.28.15 Bee-otches of the Day: bad cops

Bee-otch of the Day honors are awarded Monday through Thursday, Bee-otch of the Week is awarded Friday on Chuck69.com.



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Names: various
Ages: various
Occupation: policemen
Last Seen: everywhere
Bee-otched For: giving serving and protecting a bad name

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OK, OK, so not all cops are bad.

God bless the police men and women who risk their lives daily to help others. But sadly, there's just too many of 'em who abuse their power and go postal.

By now, we've all heard the story of Ben Fields, the police deputy in South Carolina who entered a classroom because of a 15-year-old black girl who was simply sitting there, silent and motionless wouldn't leave class. So, he takes the girl and throws her to the ground like a rag doll. He's now on unpaid suspension for the incident. Meanwhile, he and 10 other defendants are being sued because another kid at the school claimed that he was kicked out because of alleged gang activity. Rumor had it that Fields has been critical of black students, especially at the school.

But that's not the only case of cops vs. teens. Not too far from here in Eaton County, 17-year-old Devin Guilford died after being shot seven times by Sheriff's Sgt. Jonathan Frost for resisting arrest. Guilford was pulled over last winter because he flashed his high beams at Frost's police cruiser, an SUV. According to the police video taken from Frost's body camera, Guilford claimed that he couldn't see. Frost claimed that he didn't have them on and asked Guilford to hand over his license and registration. The two end up arguing and Frost ends up calling for backup. Moments later, Frost opens up Guilford's door and threatens to taser him. He wrestles Guilford to the ground while he runs off. Only audio exists from this point on. Devin Guilford was shot seven times and died. According to Guilford's family, Frost should have NEVER pulled him over.

Why do we have cops in America who think that they can do shit like this? Why do they all think that black people and teens are all punks? I was a teen once and I was never part of a gang. Yet, there's people who all think that in order to save a horse's leg, you have to kill the horse, too.

I think there's simply too many policemen and women who do the job simply because of power. They'll pull over black motorists because of their skin color and make up some bullshit excuse like "you're going over the speed limit" even though they were only going 3 MPH over. I also think that if policemen have children who fuck up, they shouldn't be cops as well, like the asshole cop in Traverse City whose son murdered a young girl. If you can't manage your children, you shouldn't manage the city.

But to the rest of the police force out there, thank you for protecting us. I personally know a cop or two myself and we need more of you to help us in need. You were there on 9/11, when the apartment down the street from me burned a few weeks ago and too many instances to mention. We need more good men and women out there like you.

As The Osmonds once sang, "one bad apple don't spoil the whole bunch".

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Tuesday, October 27, 2015

10.27.15 Bee-otch of the Day: Opal Covey


Bee-otch of the Day honors are awarded Monday through Thursday, Bee-otch of the Week is awarded Friday on Chuck69.com.



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Name: Opal Covey
Age: 75
Occupation: ordained minister
Last Seen: Toledo, OH
Bee-otched For: being a weird-ass bitch

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And I thought Grand Rapids was a town loaded with weirdos.

There is a mayoral election in Toledo, and one of the people running is a pure wackjob.

Her name is Opal Covey, an ordained minister who refers to herself as a "prophetess". She claims that if people don't vote for her this election, then God will come to the city and destroy it.

Wow! What a cute way to get votes! THREATEN PEOPLE!

She's run four times before and is running for a fifth. She claims that she could create more profit for Ohio's fourth-largest city by building amusement parks and even fixing the city's roads. But that's if they can accept her and Jesus, er, GEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEZUS to come into your souls. In an interview with WNWO NBC 24, she spoke in tongues and told the reporter that if not elected, the city will be destroyed. She also claims that she won the last election, but her votes were "stolen".

However, another video has surfaced of the Republican arguing with Fred LeFebvre, the morning host of local iHeartMedia talker WSPD. In the video, Fred calls Covey a "false prophet" while she uses The Bible to rebuke him. The video was made possible by The Young Turks, whose co-host John Iadarola refers to her as "making Mike Huckabee and Rick Santorum seem reasonable by comparison". No shit.

The city's current mayor, Paula Hicks-Hudson (D) has held that title since earlier this year when former mayor D. Michael Collins died from a heart attack at age 70. She's the first black mayor in the city's history; the city itself is 65% white.

Now, I have family in Toledo, so yes, I've been there. One of the last times I visited the city, local CBS-TV station WTOL ran a campaign encouraging people to go to church. Personally, I found it weird, but then again, I have a cousin in Toledo who once was the operations manager for a Catholic church and he told me that it wasn't doing well at the time (and this was 2010). Thankfully, I just did a Google search, and the church is still there, but he's moved on. But sadly, it's people like Covey who make Christianity look more cornpone than an episode of Hee Haw.

Look, I'm a Christian myself. I know that I'm no better than most people. All Covey is doing is standing on her little pedestal and proclaiming that she's God's best friend, and speaking in tongues to prove it. I've been to a Pentecostal church that spoke in tongues and well, I did a Google search on that and lo-and-behold, I don't see it anymore. Maybe it's because the church itself was in a crappy portable classroom with few attendees in a small hick town in northern Michigan? Could be.

My advice to the citizens of Toledo: don't worry about voting for Opal Covey. At 75, her fat ass will drop dead sooner or later and then God will decide what to do.

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Monday, October 26, 2015

10.26.15 Bee-otches of the Day: Todd Courser and Cindy Gamrat


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Names: Todd Courser and Cindy Gamrat
Ages: 43, 42
Occupations: ousted state reps
Last Seen: Lapeer and Plainwell
Bee-otched For: being sore, sore losers

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Looks like Coursrat ain't getting the love from donors.

The ousted Michigan state reps are trying to get their seats back after being ejected from the state house for their extra-marital affair which costed taxpayers. However, even their own Republicans aren't showing them the love.

The two have only raised less than $2,000 each for their campaigns. Maybe that's why I haven't seen an ad for their re-election campaigns.

The primary is a week from tomorrow and of the $1,962 she has raised, about $900 came from her own pockets. Courser, on the other hand has only raised about $1,000.  Courser is going up against 10 Republicans while Gamrat is facing eight. One of Courser's opponents is a farmer who raised $77,000 on his campaign. Another has gotten $24,000 with donations from some of the state's wealthy including the Haworth family.

One of Gamrat's other opponents have been given over $15,000, reportedly from the DeVos family.

Ya see, Chuckamaniacs, when you're in the party of family values and you're busy fucking around, well, there ya go. These two fuckpigs got what they deserved, and personally, I wouldn't be too surprised if their supporters are all religious nuts who loved their opposition to Planned Parenthood. Time for the two to kiss themselves goodbye to public life and hello to simply being embarrassments to themselves and their families.

And WHY do I vote Democrat?

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Thursday, October 22, 2015

10.22.15 Bee-otch of the Day: Ground Zero Nightclub


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Name: Ground Zero Nightclub
Age: c. 17
Occupation: nightclub
Last Seen: Traverse City, MI
Bee-otched For: allowing a loony to escape from the asylum


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For many years, rock concerts in northern Michigan were very few and far between.

In the 70s, it was the Glacier Dome in Traverse City, now a food distributor warehouse. In the 80s and 90s, it was Castle Farms in Charlevoix, which closed after years of canceled concerts and lost money. The Cherry Festival in TC tried big name concerts in the 90s but thanks to complaints from crotchety neighbors and more no-shows from the likes of Don Henley and Sheryl Crow, they too abandoned rock shows.

But then came Streeters, the many-venues-in-one supercenter in Traverse City carved in a former skating rink. Thanks to Doug Street, he's been able to bring everything from big-name rockers to country acts to EDM glow parties to the otherwise quiet town of 15,000. But sadly, he's crossed a big line this time.

On February 5th, Streeters' Ground Zero is bringing troubled Creed lead singer Scott Stapp to town, just a year and a half after it was revealed that he was homeless and had broken apart from his wife. One reason for his fall from grace was the fact that he told his family that he wanted to kill President Obama.

Supposedly, Stapp is back on the right path in life... for now. But it's sad that radio stations are still spinning this schmuck's music while the Dixie Chicks got banned from many country stations over Natalie Maines' critique of Bush. But that's what happens when radio stations are overrun by right-winged assholes like the Dickeys - and thank God that they've been demoted - who would be popping champagne bottles if Obama was indeed assassinated.

Bear in mind that the concert is also being sponsored by Rock 105, a radio station whose playlist, ironically is controlled by the Dickey's company, Cumulus.

Of course, this isn't the first time Ground Zero has brought weird-ass rockers to town; they recently issued refunds to angry fans of Puddle of Mudd, whose lead singer, Wes Scantlin is in trouble with the law every five seconds. Gee, I wonder if the same will happen to Stapp.

Canceled concerts have always been the norm for northern Michigan venues. It's one reason why Castle Farms closed; the Reibel family had been trying to sell it for years. They finally did, and the place has since been transformed to a wedding venue. People have fought to try to turn northern Michigan into somewhat of a "Detroit North" for many years to hide the fact that some view Traverse City as some tired old hick town. But either way you cut it, it'll be a town of 15,000 souls. Yes, there's some 20 and 30-somethings in northern Michigan, but do they want to pay $22 to see a man who threatened to kill the president? In some cases, getting big rockers to play TC involves pulling lots of strings.

But when you're the lead singer of one of the wussiest bands of all time and you're living in a Holiday Inn Express, it's one string that shouldn't have been pulled.
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Wednesday, October 21, 2015

10.21.15 Bee-otch of the Day: Cindy Gamrat


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Name: Cindy Gamrat
Age: 43
Occupation: former state representative
Last Seen: Plainwell, MI
Bee-otched For: wanting an apology


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The saga known as Courseratgate seems to not want to end.

On her Facebook page, Cindy Gamrat told the media that she demands an apology for saying not-so-truthful things about her affair with fellow former state rep Todd Courser. She claims that the two never shared the same staff and never wasted taxpayer dollars on their illicit affair.

Here's her message, courtesy of http://macombpolitics.blogspot.com/:

This media advisory is addressed to all local, state, and national media. I am requesting an immediate apology and correction from all media outlets that have reported the following misleading and inaccurate statements: 

1. That I admitted to misusing taxpayer dollars to cover up an affair. 
2. That I shared an office with another Representative. 

These are false statements and the continuous circulation of these false statements have caused harm to myself, my family, and my campaign. Also, I have not been found guilty of a crime nor have any costs to the state been assessed to me regarding misuse of taxpayer dollars or otherwise. In addition, each Representative has their own office as did I. The office of the Representative in question was on another floor and on opposite sides of the building, and across the street from each other. There was an overlap of staff duties for each office. 

I am requesting a public apology and correction from all media outlets who have reported these false statements. I am also requesting to be copied and made aware of each correction. Also, let it be known for future reporting, that you have been made aware of the inaccuracies of these statements. I appreciate and respect the necessary role of the media, and all the hard work that has been done to get on top of this story. I expect that this is just a simple oversight, however, these errors have continued unaddressed for far too long and are causing irreparable damage to me, my family, and my campaign. I anticipate each news outlet will be just as eager to set the record straight and make a correction regarding these statements as they were in reporting them. Thank you for your quick and timely response in addressing this, 

Cindy Gamrat
Cindy, if you're reading this (and I extremely doubt it), I only have one word to say about your little letter:

BULLSHIT.

The news media needs to apologize to YOU because you decided that your husband wasn't good enough for you sexually? It's sad that you shove your morals into our face by wanting to kill off Planned Parenthood, yet you committed adultery, one of the Ten Commandments. Aborting a fetus is NOT a sin since a fetus isn't a human being; it's just cells. You should have listened to your science teacher.

Several times in the letter, you told the media to apologize to what they did to your family. I DID NOTHING. YOU'RE THE ONE WHO SUCKED COURSER'S COCK, WENT HOME AND KISSED YOUR KIDS RIGHT ON THE MOUTH. YOU. SICK. FUCKING. CUNT.

I hope the people in your district band together to make sure you don't get your seat back. You need to stay home and realize that you are a failure and you let your people down.

Piss off you fucking Skeletor lookalike.
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Tuesday, October 20, 2015

10.20.15 Bee-otch of the Day: Drew Lane


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Name: Drew Lane
Age: ??
Occupation: former radio personality
Last Seen: Ferndale, MI
Bee-otched For: walking in a winner, leaving a loser


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I remembered as a teen going to Detroit and listening to the old 97.1 K-Rock.

To me, K-Rock was never given a chance. Then again, Detroit had a huge glut of rock stations at the time. One of my fond memories of K-Rock was their promos smacking down WRIF and their successful morning duo of Drew and Mike. They would claim that D&M frequently ripped off Howard Stern, WRIF was editing the crap out of their tunes and Arthur Penhallow was some weird old dude who loved to bang girls young enough to be his granddaughter.

True, Howard never achieved the success D&M had in Detroit, but he did have his fans. Plus in the end, D&M ended up breaking up and left WRIF so the station could get younger numbers with Dave and Chuck the Freak, who were taken from Canadian alt-rocker 89X. While Mike Clark faded into obscurity, Drew signed a new contract with WRIF parent Greater Media in 2013 to host a new afternoon sports show on newly-launched sports talker Detroit Sports 105.1.

Now comes word that after two years, Drew is out at 105.1.

In an interview with the Detroit News, Lane claims that his departure was all about the show's direction and not about money. In the two years since 105.1 flipped to sports, the station has not made a dent in the ratings. As a matter of fact, the station is #23 in the latest Nielsen ratings with a .8 and is Detroit's lowest-rated commercial FM station. On the other hand, CBS' 97.1 The Ticket has more than eight times the total listeners Detroit Sports 105.1 has.

True, it's not 105.1's fault that they suck... Or maybe it is. They're Detroit's ESPN affiliate and must clear many of their shows, such as Mike and Mike. While 97.1 is talking Detroit sports, the station branded "Detroit Sports" is stuck with some dude in Connecticut talking about a team people in Detroit don't give two shits about. Plus, 97.1 has the Red Wings, Tigers and Lions while 105.1 has the Pistons, a team that hasn't been relevant in years.

It'll be exciting to know if Lane will return to Detroit radio or not. After all, 106.7 The D's morning guy is voicetracked out of Cleveland. If iHeartMedia had a brain, they'd get Drew and maybe entice Mike to come along for the ride.

And while they're at it, maybe they'll give the two SiriusXM radios so they can rip off Howard again. I hope they can spread three days worth of shows into five days.

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Monday, October 19, 2015

10.19.15 Bee-otch of the Day: WZZM 13


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Name: WZZM 13
Age: 53
Occupation: Grand Rapids' primary ABC affiliate
Last Seen: Grand Rapids, MI
Bee-otched For: moronic journalism



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It's a sad shame knowing that my hometown has not one, but TWO ABC affiliates.

And sadly, they both suck.

The other ABC in town is WOTV-41, owned by Media General and is a sister station to WOOD-TV 8, our local NBC affiliate. WOTV *used* to be a cooler station than WZZM, but then, they flipped to the godawful "WOTV 4 Women" format. True, a lot of ABC's schedule is yenta-friendly, but it makes me love WZZM a little more.

Well, on Saturday, WZZM reporter Jamal Spencer pulled a "Dewey Defeats Truman" and told its viewers that Michigan had defeated Michigan State in our state's much-heated football rivalry. However, shortly after the report, sports anchor Eric Lloyd corrected Spencer. What happened was that in the last few seconds in the very close game, Michigan fumbled and State took the ball to a touchdown, 27-23.

And yes, the blooper has been preserved for all time.

The station's news director, Taz Painter apologized for the error, stating:

"At the end of Saturday's Michigan State victory over the University of Michigan – we screwed up. Due to a breakdown in communication, we reported that the Wolverines won.

When we make a mistake – our guideline is to correct it as quickly as possible and we did. Immediately.

Even though most TVs in Michigan were tuned to ESPN when we made the mistake – many thousands of people have seen at least portions of it on the internet and social media.

For the error – I want to say that we're sorry. I'm sorry.

We have and will continue to discuss what we can learn to make sure we don't do it again."

You know, Grand Rapids should be a lucky town since there's four TV news outlets as opposed to Detroit's three. But yet, WOOD-TV 8 kisses the Devos' ass, WWMT-3 is too focused on Kalamazoo and is owned by vultures and WXMI Fox 17, is, well, a Fox affiliate and airs Fox News Channel's unfair and unbalanced news stories. WZZM's problem is that they're too cookie cutter and too yenta-y (Juliet Dragos frightens me). The only real wise thing they've done in recent years is demote Lee VanAmyde to the "Watchdog" department, especially since he's a right-winged tool.

I think it's time for WZZM to realize that for a top 35 TV station, they need some work to do. I think if I were Gannett TEGNA, I would realize that their ratings suck and they simply need a makeover. Too many times, they simply polish a turd (i.e. retooling their morning yenta show from Take Five and Company to My West Michigan and replacing the portly Catherine Behrendt with the dog-faced Jennifer Pascua) instead of really fixing it. I'd say, let's destroy the whole thing and start anew.

Then again, what do you expect from a TV station whose call letters look the same upside down?
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Thursday, October 15, 2015

10.15.15 Bee-otch of the Day: the religious right


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Name: the religious right
Age: ageless
Occupation: bullshitters on religion
Last Seen: everywhere
Bee-otched For: hammering the first nail in Playboy's coffin

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It's been over a day since the announcement that Playboy Magazine was eliminating nudity from its publication.

The Earth is still standing, the birds are still chirping, the trees are changing color, but Lamar Odom is in a coma after coking out in a brothel in Nevada.

But it's gonna suck for some who still didn't mind paying $8 to look at pussy.

Many claimed that Playboy's decision to downgrade itself from nudie mag to laddie rag was a reasonable one since anybody could look at nudes for free as-is on the web. Its descent in circulation over the past 40 years from six million units sold per month to only 800,000, plus the fact that it had been losing money was a huge reason for its format change, starting in March 2016.

But IMHO, Playboy's decrease in circulation didn't start with the internet. It started with folks like the late Jerry Falwell and other members of the religious right. Because they pressured Americans to give them as much money as possible, they used that money to help fund Ronald Reagan's presidential campaign. They also worked on pressuring retailers that sold Playboy and other mags that showed even the slightest hint of butt crack to yank those mags off their racks. When I was a kid in the 1980s, my childhood supermarket, Village Market of Elk Rapids, MI once sold Playboy and even rented out X-rated videos. However, they got out of the sex biz in the late 80s. I heard that it had to do with some crazy law passed in Antrim County, but then again, 1) several other video stores came and went - one of them being owned by the family that started Village Market in 1949 - and they all rented porn and 2) for many years, the downtown party store sold adult magazines behind the counter.

Since family grocers didn't want to associate themselves with Playboy and harder, it did hurt sales. True, there was that slight renaissance in the early 90s thanks to Jenny McCarthy and Pamela Anderson, but the internet hurt them like hell. Why spend $8 on Photoshopped - and lightly censored - nudes when you can see girls in the raw for free on the web?

In a way, the right won with Playboy's no-nude announcement, but now, their new target has been magazines such as Cosmopolitan and their spicy headlines and images of exposed cleavage on their covers. They've pressured retailers to either put blinders over the covers or yank them altogether. Many, such as Meijer, Rite Aid and Kroger have complied with blinders.

When I was in my left-leaning church on Sunday, we talked about guns during our weekly "joys and concerns" segment of service. One woman told the congregation that young men are going out and shooting people and she wanted to know why. It's true: most mass shooters tend to be young men obsessed with guns. Many of them are loners and in the case of the shooter in Oregon recently, he was a 26-year-old virgin.

Despite the recent shootings, our government hasn't stepped in and called for tougher gun laws. That's because our Senate and House are all Republicans bought by the religious right and the NRA. When Janet Jackson accidentally showed her boob during the Super Bowl, the government reacted by forcing the FCC to boost indecency fines. Yet, we've had to deal with mass shootings too many times this year and nothing's been done.

You see, the religious right loves to come up with crazy bullshit to make us think that every time we look to see how some young woman shaves her cooch, Jesus cries, even though it was God himself who created that woman. But yet, one of the Ten Commandments is "Thou Shalt Not Kill". It's funny that these people will tell us that sex is a bad, bad thing, yet we have religious right-approved dipshits like Cindy Gamrat and Todd Courser who do a good job at breaking yet another of God's commandments: "Thou Shalt Not Commit Adultery".

My point is, if you voted Republican in the 1980s, well, it's your damn fault that you helped to make Playboy and sex in general so passe. The one thing in life that keeps us sane and yet, these holier-than-thou pricks come out and tell us lies such as "every time you have sex, you're gonna get AIDS!" and so forth. Look, these same assholes got busted in the late 1980s for tax troubles, hanging out with hookers, etc. They're not perfect, and neither are we.

Personally, if the religious right kept their goddamned mouths shut and not pressure retailers about what they sell, Playboy would be still sold everywhere instead of dingy party stores and what few retailers still sell it, such as Barnes and Noble. What's next? Muslims forcing these same supermarkets to stop selling pork? No more bacon?

If supermarkets bowed to every religious and social group out there, the only thing they'd be selling is a whole lotta nothin'.

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Wednesday, October 14, 2015

10.14.15 Bee-otch of the Day: Playboy


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Name: Playboy Magazine
Age: 62
Occupation: men's magazine
Last Seen: Chicago, IL
Bee-otched For: becoming useless

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Some twenty-five years ago, legendary TV chef Graham Kerr was a guest on Late Night With David Letterman.

The former Galloping Gourmet was formerly known for whipping up meals loaded with butter, sugar, cream, oil and other things that could clog up a heart. After his wife suffered a heart attack in the 1970s, Kerr decided to go towards a healthy approach to cooking. Anyway, Kerr made Zabaione, an Italian dessert traditionally made with egg yolks, wine and sugar. However, he used non-alcoholic wine and Mr. Letterman responded with "what's the point?"

In all fairness, the concoction turned out delicious. All Kerr did was replace some of the ingredients with healthy alternatives without destroying the flavor. In regards to the wine, however, Dave is right: what's the point?

When news broke yesterday that Playboy Magazine would be eliminating nudity from its magazine starting in March, those words rang true: what's the point? To some, this is the biggest mistake in the world of printed media since TV Guide dropped local listings from its magazine 10 years ago. During those ten years, its circulation has dropped by a million copies and is now a bi-weekly periodical. Then again, it sold 20 million copies weekly fifty years ago.

The reason for Playboy dumping nudity is kinda simple: the internet. Why spend $8 on a magazine loaded with Photoshopped nudes (and articles worth reading) when there's nudity at your fingertips on the web for free? According to CEO Scott Flanders, "You're now one click away from every sex act imaginable for free. And so it’s just passé at this juncture."

Thankfully, this will not affect PlayboyPlus.com, which will still have nudes chronicling the mag's 62-year history.

To many, Playboy was the publication of record regarding nudity for decades. Hugh Hefner took a huge risk when he found some nude photos of young starlet Marilyn Monroe and made millions of copies of his young magazine. Marilyn was an overnight sensation and Playboy took off. For years, men ogled over the sexy nudes that the magazine published. Throughout the 1950s and 60s, the photos the magazine published were considered artsy to today's standards but sexy and risque. Of course, young kids would always somehow get their hands on an issue and puberty would come at no time. Just ask Gunhill Road

Yes, Playboy had its competition and knock-offs, but in 1969, Penthouse was born and they did something that Hugh Hefner would have never done: show pubes. Hef wanted to preserve the "girl next door" image and also feared obscenity charges if he dared do so. But fearing a drop in circulation, he caved in when they published black actress Paula Kelly full-frontal in April of that year. Of course, the movie "Deep Throat" was released in 1972 and Larry Flynt's Hustler Magazine came five years later. Hardcore was taking over, but Hef kept it simple: fully-naked girls with sophisticated articles.

Of course, the 80s came and so did the religious right who pressured retailers to yank Playboy and other nudie mags off the shelves. Thanks to their efforts, stores such as 7-Eleven and family grocers adhered to their demands. But then, the internet came in the 1990s and like Mr. Flanders said, any type of nudity and sex act is now at your fingertips. The magazine's circulation now hovers around 800,000 and now loses $3 million yearly. However, the company's profits mostly are from licensing.

The man behind Playboy's parting from boobies is chief content officer Cory Jones, who personally told Hef at his Playboy Mansion in California that since removing all nudity from Playboy.com and making the website safe for work, the site's traffic has exploded from four to sixteen million hits per month. If eliminating nudity from the magazine could be a reality, they could get more female readers and they could be sold in family-based retailers again.

While making Playboy PG-13 sounds good from a financial standpoint, it will definitely take away many of its long-time readers angry that the Playmate of the Month won't show much skin after March. It's like going to a strip club and none of the girls takes their clothes off... Kind of like Grand Rapids post-strip club ban. Since the ordinance was passed in 2006, several former clubs have shut down. Now, I have a hunch that the girls will still be nude in the magazine to a point, but the only nudity that the girl will show will be to the horny photographers and crew behind the scenes. Like I want to pay $8 for that.

OK, so I'll admit. The last issue of Playboy I bought was in 2008. If I want to look at nekkid chicks, I go someplace else. Besides, it's when they have stupid pictorials that have no place in the magazine whatsoever (i.e. Heidi Montag and *now I'm trying not to puke* Lindsay Lohan) that devalue the brand as a whole. As-is, celebrities rarely pose for the magazine anymore.

In a way, I had a spiritual connection with Playboy. Just eight days shy of my 12th birthday, my parents separated and my mom took me to a place that I didn't have at my regular house: cable and places to go. As any divorced dad would do to make my stay with him better, he had to fight for me, even if he did things my mother wouldn't allow me to do. Since he was now a bachelor, he regularly bought the magazine and gave them to me to keep (and yes, I still have them). To me, the 1990s were a magical time for Playboy. Pamela Anderson, Jenny McCarthy, Julie Cialini... All women who are waaaaaay too old for me.

Sadly, because the only magazine that I still read regularly is Mad, I can tell you what Al Jaffee drew in last month's Mad Fold-In vs. who the Playmate of the Month or Year was. You see, I think part of Playboy's problem is that the girls Hef wants in his magazine aren't really everyday women. They use a lot of Photoshop to make the girl look right for the magazine. Maybe that's why - at least according to the website - more girls apply to pose for Suicide Girls than Playboy every month. If I ran Playboy, no, I wouldn't turn it into Hustler, but I would do away with all Photoshop. Stretch marks, zits, labia and anus would not be a problem. It's time to realize that girls are human, not candy.

Otherwise, I think Hef is now senile.

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Tuesday, October 13, 2015

10.13.15 Bee-otch of the Day: Walmart


Bee-otch of the Day honors are awarded Monday through Thursday, Bee-otch of the Week is awarded Friday on Chuck69.com.



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Name: Walmart
Age: 53
Occupation: mega-retailer
Last Seen: Bentonville, AR
Bee-otched For: still being too big for their own good

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Back in 2000-2001, I lived in the Kalamazoo area.

One town that I familiarized myself with was Martin, a small town of barely over 400 souls about 20 miles north of the Zoo. It had a lot of stuff a small town needed: two gas stations, a drug store, a bank, a hardware, a school system and yes, a grocery store. Once you got to the blinker in downtown Martin, the bank was on one corner, the Clark gas station was across the street, the hardware and pharmacy was on another corner and the supermarket was across from that. When I first visited Martin, the grocery was called Martin Village Market, or as the sign read, "Martin Village Mar" since the "ket" was missing. "Your Neighborhood Store - Open 7 Days".

The store was actually good-sized for a town the size of Martin. However, it looked like it was in a time warp. I remembered that it had English-style lettering throughout the store and the walls were a light brown and gray. I remembered buying some cereal bars from the store and when I got them home, they tasted weird. I looked on the box and yessiree, it had expired. I even observed that the shopping carts had the name of another grocer on them and asked the cashier, who just happened to be the owner. He claimed that it was the store's former name and that his personal philosophy was "if it ain't broke, don't fix it". Too bad that his store was trashed; hell, even the meat department was a storage area for more shopping carts with other stores' names on there.

Anyway, I ended up moving back up to northern Michigan a year later and then to Grand Rapids another year later. I still came down to K'zoo from time to time and one time, I decided to see what Martin was up to. The town added a new car wash, but otherwise, the gas stations, the bank, drug store, hardware, etc. were still there.

Everything... Except the supermarket.

The letters were taken down and Prudential Real Estate signs were put on the building. I checked online, and apparently, the old store could have been yours for a whopping $60,000. Yesterday, I decided to look at Martin via Google Street View. Everything was still there, but something happened to the grocery store.

It was demolished.

A field of green grass now sits where the old Martin Village Mar and its predecessors all sat. Now, if you want to do a full weeks' shopping, you now have to drive 10 miles to the twin towns of Plainwell and Otsego, where there's two Harding's plus a Meijer and a Walmart. Harding's is a local chain but we all know about Meijer and Walmart. Recently, Forbes ranked the families behind both stores as two of the wealthiest families in America. The Meijers are worth $7.9 billion while the Waltons are worth $149 billion.

Now, if one of their stores needed new carts, BAM! They got them. Expired food? Gone. For years, Meijer at 28th and Kalamazoo here in Grand Rapids was old and outdated. Not to worry; just make a deal with the city to build a new one and demolish the old store. Same with Walmart.

It is sad when a town of 400 can't support a grocer. True, it was the owner's fault for keeping his store looking like a 1950's nightmare, but maybe if more people supported his store instead of going to Plainwell to support billionaires who pay their workers shit wages, then there wouldn't be an empty lot. It's a shame that there's many towns with a population under 2,000 that don't have a grocer and the blame is Walmart's for making people think that family-owned stores equate to higher prices. The truth is, when people support families who hog a lot of cash, then the grocery store closes. After they close, so does the hardware, the pharmacy and so on.

At least Martin isn't a ghost town.... Yet.
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