Interrupting The Bulls’ Game is “Bulls—“

The Chicago Bulls are in a must win situation Tuesday night in their Eastern Conference first-round series against the 76ers.  While the Bulls lost 89-82 Sunday afternoon, local Bulls’ fans lost out again that afternoon to a “Tornado Warning” in central Bureau County, which is less than an hour east of the Quad Cities.

It’s our station’s severe weather policy to break into programming and stay on the air when there is a “Tornado Warning” in effect for one of the counties we service.  Sure enough, in the heat and humidity that built up Sunday afternoon, three small thunderstorms over Henry and Bureau counties in Illinois developed into a cluster of storms that extended down to Knox County.

At one point, a funnel cloud started dropping out of the clouds over central Bureau County and the “Tornado Warning” was issued and I broke into programming for about 20 minutes until the “warning” expired.

While a tornado never touched the ground, that area experienced large hail, heavy rain, and winds to almost 70-miles-per-hour.  And, in the Quad Cities, the phones in the newsroom were ringing off the hook with angry Chicago Bulls fans cussing us out for breaking into the game with boring, repetitive weather updates, while the Bulls were losing! Newsflash, they lost!

One caller even threatened to burn down the station!

I vented about the stupidity of these people on Facebook Sunday night and many of my friends agree that they’d rather know there was a tornado in the area and miss some television, but still be alive the next day to talk about it.

I got access to some of the emails that were sent in to share with you so you know what we deal with each time we interrupt programming.  The same thing happened last Thursday night when a tornado touched down in the southeastern Iowa.  I’m only using first names because I checked Facebook and a few of you are friends with some of these idiots!

SHIRLEY:  ” THIS IS WHY I DONT WATCH YOUR CHANNEL!!!!  Your weatherman that is on right now studders and is sooo boring.  You interrupt the Bulls game????  Fine say the weather alert and go back to the game.  He  repeats the same thing over and over and over.  Has he ever listened to himself?

JIM:This is not a news tip but a complaint.  On Sunday afternoon, you overrode regular programming starting at 2:15  p.m. or so to announce the tornado warning in a far corner of the QC viewing area.  What I don’t understand is why you had to keep it on for so long.  You kept repeating, repeating, repeating, repeating, the exact, exact, exact same thing.  I understand it’s important for you to make this news known and I think you’re required by the FCC to do it.  But it was pointless for you to keep it going as long as you did.  Your competitors put the regular show in small window while covering the storm.  You need to do the same thing.  This reminds me why I never watch your news coverage.  Very amateur with pointless reporting.

ED:  Her’s [sic] my tip. Get that blathering weatherman who has been talking about the  same thing over and over for ten minutes off the air.”

CHAD:  “Keep the stupid weather updates to the commercial time. I missed the end of Greys Anatomy on Thurs because of weather that had absolutely nothing to do with me. Today I am missing the end of the Bulls game because of weather that doesn’t include me. A quick show of the radar and where shit is would be sufficient. I’m about to call my satellite provider and get rid of u guys. U used to be my favorite, but now u guys piss me off. Maybe this is y the other stations r taking your employees AND viewers. I don’t think 20-30 min of radar and analysis is necessary. Matter of fact, IT’S BULLSHIT!!!

MATTHEW:  “Are you kidding??? Last 3 minutes of the bulls game and you have your stupid weather crap on???  Get over it.  Make the announcement and move on.  Completely rediculous. [sic]”  (Hey, Matthew, so is your spelling!)

HEATHER:Get the important information out to those individuals in areas that need to know about severe weather and then go back directly to the NBA Playoffs, especially when individuals have been watching it closely for TWO HOURS and then NOT ALLOWED by YOUR STATION to see the last 3 minutes of the game!  Are your freaking kidding us????  Good for your station!  We do not need Mr. Peeples [sic] telling us definitions of what “bad weather” means for 20 minutes.  Good day!  : (

I replied to three of these emails personally and never heard back from Shirley, Jim, or Chad.  Chad’s was my favorite because both times the coverage he complained about had nothing to do with him.  I guess he hasn’t realized in life that the world doesn’t rotate around his axis!

So, I’m boring and very amateur.  Nice!  Good thing I’m not really vindictive enough to wish that the next storm drops a tree on their house!


12 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Cinchy on May 8, 2012 at 6:58 am

    Thanks for posting … made my morning !
    What a bunch of idiots !


  2. Good grief! We all hate having our shows interrupted, but I think most of us understand the necessity to the situation. You keep doing what you do best, Anthony, and ignore the whiny haters!


  3. Vicky,

    I don’t let the comments bother me. I just thought those were too good not to pass along. 🙂

    I’m with you about wanting to see TV when I’m watching, but I want to know if there’s a chance I’ll die!



  4. Posted by Cinchy on May 8, 2012 at 8:06 am

    There is a thing called YOU TUBE and pretty sure you can catch the last 3 minutes of anything on there………. if you are still alive to watch it !


  5. Posted by Tammy Ridpath on May 8, 2012 at 9:16 am

    These half-wits don’t realize the range of weather that you cover. It IS, just all about them and their city. You are just doing your job and doing it very well. 😉


  6. Posted by Darla on May 8, 2012 at 10:31 am

    This is one of my complaints about sports in general…why are they so important???I even tried an experiment once: I worked in a bank and everyone else wandered around from windows to desks talking about the latest play-off game. When they were finished I walked over to a fellow employee and started talking about a play (as in theater) I had seen. I was immediately reprimanded for leaving my desk. Now,
    I guess it is more important to see a “game” than to stay alive. I’d like to see the complaints if those people suddenly found themselves without a roof during the game because there was no warning given.


    • Darla,

      That is too funny in hindsight. Maybe it was just a bad play you were talking about. 🙂

      You know what would happen if someone was not given a warning, they’d sue us.

      Thanks for sharing your experiment story with me and making me smile. Have a great day.



  7. Posted by Scott on May 8, 2012 at 4:19 pm

    Well done Anthony. I didn’t realize that you have to have thick skin just like your Alderman! lol


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