/me misses Frieda
Radio shock-jocks, known affectionally to their fans as "Radio Gods".
Don Geronimo (Mike Sorce) and Mike O'Meara (that's his real name) broadcast their puerile, disgusting, vile, delinquent and absolutely effing hilarious radio show from their flagship station 106.7 (WJFK), located in the toothless city of Fairfax, Virgina. It is broadcast nationwide to over 60 stations via the Westwood-1 Radio Network every day starting at 11:00 AM and it runs anywhere from four to five hours. The duration of the show varies wildly, and is dictated by how much commentary they have on the news, which is read by Buzz Burbank (Mike Ellston) during the final segment of the show. This has caused no small amount of friction between Don & Mike and some of the stations that carry their show. That and the fact that they sometimes go an hour without stopping for a commercial break. (I'll pause for a moment, while all the marketting people reading this recover from that affront to their sensabilities.)
Apart from the news, the show has absolutely no socially redeeming value whatsoever.
That's why we love it.
Don Geronimo is the cynical leader of the show, whose dismay at the intelligence of the show's callers is evident every time he hangs up on one after a razor sharp, often brutal, remark. He's considered the leader of the show because he is the one who guides the show by choosing which bits they do, and how long they stay on a particular topic. On the rare occasions when Don is out, the show is led by Mike O'Meara, but Don is very conspicuous by his absence, and the show suffers without his guiding instincts and sarcastic sense of humor.
While Don is the leader, Mike O'Meara could hardly be considered a side-kick. He is a co-host who supplies color and variety to Don's constant chatter. He sports a host of celebrity voices which he uses whenever he deems appropriate - which is most of the show, every time a celebrity is mentioned. A comprehensive list of Mike's voices is probably impossible since he adds to his repetoire constantly, but some of his better and more well-known impressions include:
Some of his impressions - particularly ones that he's currently teaching himself - sound basically like Mike O'Meara himself with a kooky accent or timbre. The first time he did Rush Limbaugh, it took me several minutes to figure out whose voice it was supposed to be. And I only figured it out because Don referred to him as "Rush". His established voices, however, are dead on.
He also has a few original characters that he does frequently, like Charly Stuangstabilac and Don's Uncle Luigi.
Don does three impressions: Alec Baldwin, Tony Danza and Satan. None are very good (except the Satan one, but who knows how accurate it is?), but impersonations are not his forte, and he knows and accepts this.
The bulk of the show consists of unscreened phone calls, which Don refers to as the Random Rotating Phone Scan. This can make for an exceptionally funny show or an abyssmal display of human stupidity the likes of which you would not believe, unless you've heard it. This has its own dark beauty, I suppose, but usually pisses Don off immensely, sometimes leading him to vow to never take another phone call.
Under such an environment, it was only natural they would gather several regular callers who have so endeared themselves to Don and Mike (and the audience, more or less) to such a degree that they are now a full-fledged part of the show. Dennis Murphy, Tom Gavin, Homo-Joe, Mr. 40 (so called for the large Malt-Liquor bottles he lugs around everywhere), Cheryl the Big Dyke and Georges (pronounced 'Hor-hay') call several times a week. Dennis Murphy has even stood in for newsman Buzz Burbank on occasion.
There are several regular features of the show which turn up from time to time.
- Low Budget Jeopardy
As it's name implies is a Jeopardy rip-off with $1, 2 & 3 values for each category.
- Strip Trivia
Where the shows listeners are invited to the studio, and answer questions from Trivial Pursuit cards. Every time the contestant answers incorrectly they are made to remove an article of clothing. The winner is the last contestant who has any clothes on.
- It's all Relative:
Callers guess at several extremely intimate details about a member of their family (like, "Has your sister ever engaged in anal sex?"). Then that relative is called up, and asked to verify the accuracy of those answers. The more questions the caller gets correct, the more loot they get.
- Highway Love-Connection
A caller tells his location to the audience, and potential dates who are listening try to find them on the street. The caller then decides if he or she wants to date the one who found them.
- Can you get to ten?
The object of this game is to call someone (usually the caller's parents) and lie to them. Before they accept callers Don and Mike collaborate for several minutes generating an incredible story which includes 10 humongous lies. The lies usually starts off with the caller going uptown and running into a celebrity. They progress to the point where the celebrity invites the caller back to his or her hotel/home. The big lie always - ALWAYS - ends up with the caller enjoying "glorious four-way sex." The caller must use these exact words or the whole thing is a bust. If the person to whom the caller tells this outragous lie indicates that they think he's lying, they lose the game. Probably the best bit Don and Mike have ever come up with.
Personally, I like the random rotating phone scan better than the games.
The show is produced by Robert Speiwak (Robbay, Bo-bo, Bobby Sparkles, Delores the Transvestite), who can often be heard laughing in the background whenever Don or Mike make a particularly funny wise-crack. He is ironically referred to as "The Caller's Friend". Ironically, because his disdain at the callers' intelligence, or lack thereof, is even more finely honed than is Don's. He'll scream "WHORE!" at unusually obnoxious female callers, and will mock male callers who drone on by nonsensically mimicking their voice ("Blah! BLAH! Blah! BLAH!) while they're talking. He's also called upon to supply the voice of Delores during one of Don and Mike's regular features, "Dialing For Transvestites". "Delores" will call a phone-sex number aimed at transvestites, and give the phone-sex girl a run for her money. The phone-sex girl is quickly ordered not to laugh at anything Delores says, and this is strictly enforced throughout the duration of the call. It's impossible for the girls not to laugh. Especially when "Delores" wants to be called a "pretty little girl".
Newsman Buzz Burbank is the straight man of the group. He does one impression, Smithers from the Simpsons. But he doesn't do it very often. Most often Buzz will be heard chiming in to correct current-event errors made by Don and Mike or the callers, or simply providing information to them when they need it. He's often referred to by Don as a decrepit old man, a drug-crazed hippy, or a preditorial sexual deviant. He is also Georges's object of desire, who calls occasionally to describe some of the many ways he would like to sexually violate Buzz.
I was going to write a brief history of their time together, which began in 1985 in Washington D.C. on WAVA's Morning Zoo program, but I figured that I'd let someone else do that, since this behemoth has already grown far larger than I was planning to make it.
A sad update: July 11, 2005, Frieda Sorce, the wife of Don Geronimo and frequent guest of the show was killed in an automobile collision near Ocean City, MD.
Frieda, Rest in Peace, m'lady. You are missed.