Monday, October 24, 2005

A RARE 60 MINUTES

Ticking....I was looking forward to this week's 60 Minutes so much that I missed the middle portion of the WS. I clicked back to it just in time to miss the grand slam. Last night's program, all 3 segments, plus Andy, is what 60 Mins is really good at. There was no political slanting, no slamming of Bush and his "cronies," just great programming. And the bonus: Very few commercials. At the top of the show they announced there would be limited commercials, but later they slipped-in a short commercial that said there would be fewer commercials. I had to laugh at that.

The opening segment was on Michael Jordon. This was the interview I most wanted to see. He discussed his life in b-ball, business, family, gambling, and the state of the NBA today. Jordan is an incredible individual, a rare bird, so to speak. He admitted his mistakes and called himself "stupid" for becoming so involved in gambling, and he thinks the problems in the NBA today stem from paying the players too much upfront for something they've yet to earn. I think he's onto something there. Over the years he felt like he was owned by his fans and now he wants his time for himself and family.

The second segment was on Sgt. Jenkins, the American soldier who abandoned his unit and joined up with the North Koreans back in the mid '60s. I have no time for any SOB that does this. However, by the end of this interview I felt somewhat sorry for this guy. The UCMJ doesn't provide for this type of punishment, though many would say he deserved every bit of it. He showed remorse and said it was the "mistake of his life" and apologized to the troops he abandoned. His decision to cross the border into N. Korea was rooted in his fear of being sent to VN later. In his thinking, he figured he would somehow end up back in the states and be rid of the VN experience, instead it cost him 4 decades of his life in a hell he never imagined possible. I guess when you make your bed, you get to spend some time in it.

The final segment was about a severely brain-damaged boy named Rex. He's a musical savant and communicates through his music on a level that's mind boggling. To say Rex's brain is wired differently is an understatement; he functions at a level that is not understandable. It's too bad 60 Mins doesn't repeat throughout the week, because this story is worth the price of admission.

Andy, well, he was Andy.

It's too bad 60 Mins doesn't stick with this type of programming.

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