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The Cold Filtered Ramblings of Gene Mueller

Sometimes you make funny and sometimes, it just happens

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The most talked-about moment on the radio Wednesday morning didn't involve a pithy guest serving up fantastic insight on a topic of the day.

It wasn't a news story that evoked outrage, anger or tears.

It wasn't a sports moment or an angry outburst from a player or manager,

It most certainly didn't come from me.   I just happened to be sitting in my chair in the studio with my mike off and my face buried in my computer screen when it just...kinda...happened.

I believe it was just before seven a.m.  Commercials were playing, and I was getting ready for my next break.   A spot was running that touts the virtues of the colonoscopy, part of a local campaign for a Milwaukee area health provider.

It ended, and the magic occurred.

As the colonoscopy spot drew to a close, the next commercial began.   An ad...wait for it...about Roto Rooter.



I think Accunet's Brian Wickert was the first one to call the studio hotline, pointing the juxtaposition out to my producer, Bryan Ramsey.   Other calls followed.   I get several e-mails throughout the day.   People found it hilarious. 

It was a coincidence, pure and simple.   I said nothing on the air about it--for those who caught it and found it funny, the happening itself is its own reward.  

I have no role in how our spots line up.   I just see them appear on our in-studio computer screen and watch the magic happen, firing off every time I touch one of the handful of buttons I'm allowed to push during the show. 

Great pains are taken by others at the station to make sure we avoid awkward advertising moments: we don't run competitors commercials back-to-back, for instance.  There was a time when, in the unfortunate event of a plane crash involving major loss of life, we'd yank all airline spots off the air.   Then again, we didn't pull the ones from auto deals when there's a particularly brutal fatal car accident, but that's a discussion for another day.

So it goes in radio--on a day when "Wisconsin's Morning News" had all manner of live guests, breaking overnight news, the latest on the Brewers' win at Pittsburgh and wise pigskin analysis from the voice of the Packers, Wayne Larrivee--it's two commercials airing side by each that generate the buzz.

Sometimes you make funny.   Sometimes, it just happens.  No offense intended.

I'm years away from my next colonoscopy but rest assured, when the time arrives and I'm all prepped up and rarin' to go in the doctor's office, wearing that funny little smock as I lie on the gurney ready to count backwards as they start putting me under, I can't be blamed if I start singing that oh-so-famous refrain:

"...and away go troubles, down the drain!"



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