Musings From the Bench

musings from the bench-2In 1995 my kids, teenagers really, discovered WAAF 107.3FM radio. The station played a combination of modern rock, classic rock and heavy metal. The type of music just about all of us enjoyed. Whenever we were in the car, no matter where we were going, the radio was always on and it was always set to WAAF. Then one day we were introduced to the new afternoon drive show hosts, Opie and Anthony.

Opie and Anthony (or Opium and Anal Drip as they were called amongst my kids and their friends, don’t ask, I never did) started out small, just getting their footing on how their sense of humor would play out in Boston and areas further West in Massachusetts. It wasn’t long before they were pushing the envelope. They were responsible for “Whip ‘Em Out Wednesday” where females traveling down the turnpike and freeways were encouraged to flash their boobs at passing motorists. This turned out to be an extremely popular escapade. There are no statistics on the number of accidents caused by this behavior, but I’d imagine there were some, especially by the “older” driver whose eyes grew wider as the jaw dropped. Then came the less successful “Testicle Tuesday” where men were encouraged to drop their drawers and let ‘it all hang out’. The fact that so many people participated in these stunts left me wondering what it was about these two that had people falling over themselves to do what they wanted.

But not all of Opie and Anthony’s escapades/challenges had anything to do with the Jerkspublic. One day they invited a lab tech from one of the hospitals in the Boston area to decide which one of them had the higher sperm count. They each took turns filling a specimen cup (they even had a bet going as to which one could fill it the fastest) and then waited for the results of the ‘count-up’. When all was said and done, Anthony won the contest crediting his ‘swarthy’ ancestry. It’s only now that I question if they really pulled this off or if it was a hoax. But the day came when the duo pushed the envelope too far for the people of Boston and the station found itself in the middle of a poop zone.

16 years ago Opie and Anthony made the announcement that Boston’s much beloved Mayor Menino had died in a car accident in Florida. The fact that this happened on April Fool’s Day had no impact on the listening public. According to the Boston Globe “friends began showing up at the home of Menino’s sister-in-law to offer condolences”. At the time of this April Fool’s Day prank, Mayor Menino was on a plane coming back from Florida and was told by his driver upon landing that “he was dead.”  Well, this didn’t sit well with Menino so he sent off a letter to the FCC asking them to fine WAAF. In lieu of being fined the station offered to raise money for His Honor’s favorite charity but the Mayor said “no, it’s not about money, it’s about professional ethics.” A few days later the station’s general manager and program manager were both suspended and Opie and Anthony were fired.

Just a few months later the duo started working at WNEW, a radio station in New York. A 1998 article in the NYT reported that their contract did not contain a no pranks clause so I’m not sure if they were fired from that position for their 2003 “Sex for Sam” stunt that had people competing for prizes by having sex in public places. I believe the winner was the couple that had sex on the steps of St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York City. Anyway, fired or just canceled, they lost their jobs only to be hired by SiriusXM Satellite Radio. Sounds more like a reward to me, just sayin’. That leads us to what recently happened in Times Square and the firing of one half of the Opie and Anthony Radio Show.

It seems Anthony “was in Times Square taking some pictures when an African-American woman objected to being photographed.” This is when he claims he was assaulted by the woman. He didn’t report the assault to the police saying, “Because I can take some punches without wasting the cops’ time.” Instead he decided to go to his Twitter account and let loose a barrage of insults laced with profanity and inflammatory language.(Name calling with a racist bent)

Now I have to wonder how this man could have absolutely no knowledge of what a hot button issue this is in America right now. Has he learned nothing from the Donald Sterling scandal at all? And he’s actually flabbergasted that SiriusXM had the audacity to fire him over this. He states, “Sirius decided to cave and fire me. Welcome to bizarro world. Fired for s&^% that wasn’t even on the air and wasn’t illegal. So, who’s next.?” That’s a good question. The proverbial ball is now in Opie’s court. These two have been together since 1995 (or even earlier), that’s longer than some marriages. Will Opie quit in solidarity? Will he tell Anthony, ‘hey, man, you’re on your own with this one’? I don’t know but it’s gonna be interesting. Like Ron White said, “You can’t fix stupid.”  I’m just not sure who the stupid ones are anymore.


Massachusetts is 1 of 4 states where private citizen ownership of fireworks is illegal. Delaware, New York and New Jersey are the other three. But that doesn’t stop people in Massachusetts from going to New Hampshire to purchase them and bring them back home. You can usually start hearing the loud bang of a firecracker (salutes, cherry bombs) around the last day of June, first day of July with the larger ordinance showing up at family BBQs on the 4th.

Now I’m not talking about people shooting off rockets with a red glare or any bombs bursting in air, those are reserved for community-sponsored firework displays done by professionals like the Grucci Brothers. No, the ones I’m talking about are the big ones you hold with the fingers of one hand while you light the fuse with a match or a lighter in the other hand. Hold that lit firecracker for too long and BANG you’re next stop is the emergency ward of your local hospital. Well, the 4th of July in my area was a total washout what with all the rain from Hurricane Arthur and most communities postponed their celebration until the 5th. That included the backyard BBQ firecracker master.

The only firecrackers legal in Massachusetts



I once asked my father why Massachusetts banned people from owning fireworks and he told me that some time before World War II when people had access to whatever type of firework they wanted the fuses were deceptively short and the firework would explode before people had a chance to throw it, and their finger or thumb would land at their feet. Then he would point to my Uncle Frank who was missing a finger as proof of what he said. Now my Uncle Frank served with the Army during WWII fighting in the European theater while my Dad was a Marine fighting in the Pacific. I had always thought Uncle Frank’s injury came as a result of his service. Could be my father was just telling me a cautionary tale to keep me from ever thinking about lighting a firecracker. Either way, it worked.

Too bad all those folks at all those 4th of July BBQs didn’t hear it. After the noise of the backyard firecrackers ended, the sounds of ambulance sirens began. One hand surgeon said his two busiest times of the year are winter and summer. In winter people stick their hand in the snow blower chute assembly to unclog their snow blower before turning it off, and in the summer when people play with firecrackers.

Like Ron White said, “You can’t fix stupid.”


Since the announcement of the decision of SCOTUS in favor of the Hobby Lobby we-won’t-provide-birth-control-to-our-female-employees-because-it’s-against-our-religious-beliefs, comments are showing up everywhere that if a woman wants birth control pills she can still get them, just pay the out-of-pocket costs.

Now, it’s been a long time since I needed birth control pills what with being on the other side of menopause, so I looked up on Google just how much birth control pills would set you back each month and found that it depended on what brand/type of birth control pills you took. They average anywhere from $20 to $50. That’s a lot of money if you ask me, but it’s still cheaper than having a child even if the father pitches in monetarily once the results of the DNA test comes back. So as it stands now, if you still want to have sex but not get pregnant you have to take that bull by the horns and sacrifice whatever you’re spending $20 to $50 a month on and buy your own birth control pills or stop having unprotected sex because your boyfriend/husband doesn’t want to wear a condom. Once again, the responsibility is all yours….5 strange men wearing black robes saw to that.judges

I saw a few reports on some “news” magazine shows about Cameron Diaz saying she doesn’t want any children, she doesn’t want to be a mother. The same goes for Chelsea Handler, Ellen DeGeneres and Portia de Rossi. People gasped. People asked out loud what kind of women are these, after all isn’t that the reason women were created?

Well, I for one applaud them. Not every woman on this planet is cut out to be a mother. In fact, an estimated 200 mothers kill their children every year in this country. I’m not talking about abortion here….these kids were born, brought home, and cared for right up until their mothers ended their lives.

As far as I know there isn’t anyone telling women that when they grow up and get a dog or a cat that they will have fulfilled their destiny……no, no one has ever said that. Nor has anyone ever said “Oh, if you don’t get a dog or a cat before you’re too old to get one, you’ll regret it for the rest of your life.”

I would like to suggest to women who know in their heart of hearts that they don’t want children to have their fallopian tubes cut and tied while they still have that option. You never know when those men in black robes will strike again.

Thanks for reading. Until next time.

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About Jane Gray 58 Articles
Born in the '50s, grew up in the '60s, got married in the '70s. Gave birth in the '80s and started collecting social security in 2013. My time is my own and I don't mind sharing my opinions on everything with everybody. I hate injustice, the truth is easier to remember than a lie. I like the New England Patriots, the Boston Celtics, the New York Mets, and that English futbol team from Liverpool.


  1. There are many ways women can get “screwed” without their permission… those 5 men in black robes just added another one.

    And… just one thought or question.. those 200 deaths by a “mom’s” hand… thats it? only 200? It just seems every time I pick up my paper lately, some dumbass is doing something evil to their own children. But, then maybe that includes the “dads”, too?

    I don’t know what that says about people in this world but is is pure d sad. Unfortunately, they don’t require a test or license or anything else to be a parent and you can become one by just having a few minutes worth of randiness in the back seat of car.

    As I have come to expect from you… Good work, Jane.

  2. Thanks Jane. I never heard of Opie and Anthony until last weekend. Seems to me both of them could provide perfect samples for Ron White’s monologue. I played with firecrackers as a youngster, but never had the desire to hold one any longer than necessary. As far as kids are concerned, I think there are reports that there are upwards of 20 million children that nobody gives a damn about. Raising kids is hard enough if you love and nurture them. Kudos to the women that are smart enough to realize it isn’t a job they wish to undertake.

  3. I never found O&A that entertaining. I think The idiot duo out of Cleveland are superior- and they are no great shakes. We used to have a really solid pairing here in LA- but they moved to AM so they could talk more, and brought in a legacy guy and a soccer mom, who are both pretty useless.

    They did give the world Jim Norton though.

  4. I remember when Opie and Anthony came to New York because I was in high school at the time, and their humor seemed to be perfectly aimed towards my group of friends. A few of them recited their show like it was religion. Every skit, every joke. So I eventually broke down and listened. Hated it immediately. Didn’t get what the fuss was about.

  5. That 200 figure was an estimate but i don’t know from what year. It was included in a list of the worst 20 Moms who killed their children. The list included Marybeth Tinning and Andrea Yates. I heard of Andrea Yates but not Marybeth Tinning so I don’t know how recent the list is.

    When I was growing up in the ’50s it was expected that since I was a girl I’d grow up, get married and then have children. That’s just the way it was back then. But I must say with all the crap kids put you through it’s a wonder any of us survived.

    Thanks for the compliment, Joe. Hope I never disappoint.

  6. One of our local hospitals offers a yearly 3 hour course for kids ages 11 to 15 who are interested in becoming babysitters. Three hours, once a year. Parenthood is the most important job there is but the training is by example (monkey see-monkey do) or on-the-job. Screw it up and your offspring can spend a lifetime in therapy.

    There was a program called Baby Think It Over where teens who thought they needed a baby to feel loved where given the care and feeding of a computerized baby. When the baby started crying, the teen had to insert a key in a keyhole in the back to stop the crying. Feeding, changing diapers, everything they’d have to do with a real baby. Even taking the baby on outings to the store, restaurant, wherever, and if the baby started acting up, they had to take care of the problem. This even included 2am feedings and such. When the test period was over the baby would be collected and the computer information inside would be analyzed. Not one teen passed the test and they all decided they weren’t ready for motherhood.
    I think this should be mandatory for all teens–male and female–instead of that silly take-care-of-this-egg business schools had back in sex ed classes in the ’90s.

    There’s a reason why people who go through therapy for drug or alcohol addiction are told on their release to start with a plant, and if it survives then move on to a pet, and if it survives then maybe, just maybe, they can start thinking about having children. 18 years of non-stop responsibility can be deadly.

  7. When they first started at WAAF they weren’t really what I would call Shock Jocks. They were just knuckleheads who played well off each other. Never heard their WNEW show or when they went to Sirius. As for Jim Norton, don’t you think he would have found a spot somewhere else? I mean, the guy is funny.

  8. Yeah, I think you have to be able to relate to their humor. Thank God my kids and I grew up. LOL

  9. Hobby Lobby is providing 16 different types of birth control pills and or devices. They disapprove of only 4 that can cause abortion of a fetus. Abortion is what is against their religion and that should not be trampled on when the employees can choose form 16 other pills. The decision only affects Hobby Lobby at this time. I think too many people listened to Miss Fluke about it costing $3000 for 3 years of Law school, when there is a target store 3 miles from the law school that sells a month supply for $9 that comes to $324 for 3 years.This entire story is about religious freedom and the first amendment to the constitution backs up the SCOTUS’ decision.

  10. As you know, I don’t believe abortion should be a method of birth control, but many in the religious right disapprove of any type of birth control that will prevent pregnancy. I have never heard of Miss Fluke or that birth control pills can be purchased at Target for $9 for a month supply. Very glad my days of needing birth control are over.

    Thanks for the info.

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