The New York Daily News reports:

The Imus morning show on WFAN (660 AM) is known for its blunt remarks, but sports guy Sid Rosenberg pushed that envelope yesterday. The crew was discussing the report that singer Kylie Minogue has breast cancer and someone commented that she’s attractive. Sid said, “She won’t look so pretty when she’s bald with one -----."

Here’s Sid. If you see him, please kick him in the ----.

(Via J.F. Beck)

Posted by Tim B. on 05/20/2005 at 11:58 AM
  1. If you see him, please kick him in the ----.

    Clearly you mean “head”, because this guy ain’t got no nuts.

    Posted by Rob Crawford on 05/20 at 12:04 PM • permalink

  2. By the look of it, Sid’s head has already had a kicking or two.

    Posted by J F Beck on 05/20 at 12:08 PM • permalink

  3. Okay I’ll dig out the audio when I get time.  As I remember it, it was just Sid doing his job of making sure that the show isn’t taken over by piety and caring attitudes that we all love with public forums.

    A cloud of piety has descended now, rest assured.  Sid was talked to and apologized on the air an hour later, the message to listeners willing to sit through hours of nothing happening for a little on-target barb now and then, being don’t bother listening, it won’t happen.

    The deal is, Sid violates this or that fake social convention, like caring about celebrities but not the guy next door, and the crew is outraged and insults Sid to the heavens, and it goes back and forth until the social convention is not so much violated as unrecognizeable; at this point Andrea Mitchell would have a hard time coming on the phone and reasserting how awful it is that whatever it was, because it would be transparently just the plastic celebrity concern that has just been destroyed.

    The Daily News isn’t going to get what the show is about any more than the station management does.

    Imus has to be concerned that Andrea Mitchell is willing to call, so takes the other side such antics, but the combat is the thing.

    Mostly on the show, nothing is happening; the hook is that it might.

    The philosophical deal is that sympathy for celebrities is _entertainment for the caring audience_.  Entertainment doesn’t mean made happy but being engrossed, relating, and such things.  Those are positive things _in your own neighborhood_ where they might do some good, but empty self-gratification in the celebrity case.  (It’s gratifying locally but does some actual good there; that’s what the gratification gene is for.  The point of sympathy ``sorry about your father’’ is not to express your sorrow - you don’t have sorrow yet are not being insincere - but to say tactfully to the guy that you’re cutting him some social slack for a while, as to keeping up his social obligations to you.  That’s why he says ``thanks.’’)

    Celebrity sympathy, that posture that’s everywhere in the media, is parasitic on a positive virtue, but undermines it by being only self-gratifying.  Some similarity to sex here.

    The moral objection, and this is Sid’s point, is that it’s wrong to take somebody else’s tragedy as your own entertainment, so he refuses to offer it, holding out for the value of the genuine article.  Station management is now on the other side, in sort of a cowardly move.

    Audio clip in a few hours when I get to it.

    Posted by rhhardin on 05/20 at 12:32 PM • permalink

  4. The philosophical deal is that sympathy for celebrities is _entertainment for the caring audience_. Entertainment doesn’t mean made happy but being engrossed, relating, and such things.  Those are positive things _in your own neighborhood_ where they might do some good, but empty self-gratification in the celebrity case.

    And that makes being a rude, uncaring ass OK because...?

    Posted by Rob Crawford on 05/20 at 12:36 PM • permalink

  5. The point is the argument that ensues, and Sid is very fast on his feet and usually holds up his end.  That’s how the convention gets rendered unrecognizeable.

    The statement is just the opening move.

    Posted by rhhardin on 05/20 at 12:56 PM • permalink

  6. He’d need to be fast on his feet, were he to advance beyond this opening move. Australians hearing Sid would quickly leave him unrecognisable.

    Posted by Tim B. on 05/20 at 01:02 PM • permalink

  7. What a bloody stupid jackass.

    Posted by on 05/20 at 01:05 PM • permalink

  8. Hardin, that kind of writing is what I remember about The New Yorker. Sid’s schtick came unschtuck. Sorry Kylie, sorry Oz.

    Posted by on 05/20 at 01:16 PM • permalink

  9. The statement is just the opening move.

    And that makes being a rude, uncaring ass OK because...?

    (All you’ve been saying is “he’s just trying to start an argument!” I could attempt to start an argument by daring someone to prove their mother didn’t provide favors to the Baltimore Ravens last night, but that doesn’t make the statement any less rude, thoughtless, or idiotic.)

    Posted by Rob Crawford on 05/20 at 01:20 PM • permalink

  10. I have to pass through his town on the way home.

    Should I tell him “Mr Blair sent me”?

    Posted by Mike Jericho on 05/20 at 01:25 PM • permalink

  11. I appreciate your efforts, rhhardin, but that’s art school talk- if you say “signifier” and “socio-political inversions” and “emergent concurrencies” enough, and talk long enough, you can manage to convince the neurotic and over-educated that up is down and black is white and that John Kerry is a viable candidate.

    Sorry, but this was a boorish and stupid comment, a symptom of the puerile lack of restraint and decorum that sadly infests our culture. There’s nothing interesting about a grown man (or woman) enacting infantile boundary transgression, like a grinning toddler scooping feces from his diaper and smearing it on the wall. Sure, saying something crass makes people mad. No shit, sherlock.

    Posted by on 05/20 at 01:33 PM • permalink

  12. Fans of Sid can send him a note of appreciation here.

    Mine went something like this:


    I’ve got a quick suggestion for Sid Rosenberg.

    Don’t come to Australia unless you want your fucken head smashed in, asshole.

    Mike Jericho.

    Posted by Mike Jericho on 05/20 at 01:34 PM • permalink

  13. For our non-US readers, realize no one (and I mean no one) listens to Imus and his radio show.  I mean he has almost dropped off the Top 20.

    While 30 years ago he was someone, he has entirely been replaced by Howard Stern.

    Also realize, no one in the US knows who Kylie is.

    Now on the tangential subject of media power…

    Howard Stern had a Arnold Schwarzenegger impersonator on pretending to be the Governor.  In the fake interview, pseudo-Arnold suggested blowing up the moon to help control women’s menstrual cycles.  The MSNBC TV show “The Scarborough Report” reported the guy as if it was a real interview. The show ranted against Arnold, and commented how positions like this would alienate one-half of California’s voters.
    Howard thought it was funny that this news program didn’t check it’s sources. The reporter was quoting a London newspaper and they didn’t check their sources either.  To its credit, “The Scarborough Report” did run a retraction a few days later.

    Posted by on 05/20 at 01:48 PM • permalink

  14. Mr. Rosenberg appears to be no great prize to the opposite sex himself.

    Posted by on 05/20 at 01:55 PM • permalink

  15. Not even a lethal riot in Footscray tonight would teach New York radio a lesson. (We’re the blue state sophisticates, you know.) Remember the tsnami jokes on the hip-hop station? Even Alliyah’s plane crash was a yukfest the week before 9/11.

    Posted by on 05/20 at 02:03 PM • permalink

  16. it was just Sid doing his job of making sure that the show isn’t taken over by piety and caring attitudes that we all love with public forums

    Yup, there’s definitely too much piety and caring attitudes in society today. Sling that mud!

    By the way, if anyone visits Mr Hardin’s new blog (link at his name) and coasts over to his profile, they’ll come upon his creepy home page, which is wall-to-wall soundclips, a huge Don Imus collection uppermost. To each their.... own I guess.

    Posted by Andrea Harris, Administrator on 05/20 at 03:11 PM • permalink

  17. Any minute now, he’ll tell us about the ranch…

    Posted by on 05/20 at 03:20 PM • permalink

  18. Audio clip of the event at http://rhhardin.home.mindspring.com/imuscut.insensitive.ram May 18 08:50am (wasn’t when I thought it was).

    Imus’s remark ``Now I have to try to cover this..’’

    Posted by rhhardin on 05/20 at 03:25 PM • permalink

  19. Sid and Danielle welcomed their daughter Ava in late 2004.

    When was she born, I wonder?

    Posted by on 05/20 at 04:11 PM • permalink

  20. So, if it was said about a $10-a-blow South Central trannie crack whore, it would have some deeper meaning?  Or would it still be boot-to-the-head-worthy?

    Posted by on 05/20 at 06:19 PM • permalink

  21. Is that him in the picture?  Why does he remind me of Ford Fairlane, only with less hair?  What an a--w---.

    Posted by on 05/20 at 06:37 PM • permalink

  22. well guys with severe cuteness deficits often feel the need to be unpleasant about women - as to kylie’s cancer, very sad & all but isn’t it doing grand things for donations to cancer charities

    Posted by on 05/20 at 09:01 PM • permalink

  23. I hope Sid’s wife gets breast cancer.

    Well, I mean, I don’t hope she does, but y’know…

    Posted by Leigh on 05/20 at 09:43 PM • permalink

  24. Achillea, Australians are tribal. We will happily spend most of the day tearing down one of our tall poppies like Kylie (when they aren’t terribly ill, natch) but when someone outside the tribe does it, well, look out.

    Posted by Mike Jericho on 05/20 at 09:47 PM • permalink

  25. An interesting little side note.  Kylie was in a TV series called The Henderson Kids, along time ago.  A guy called Brad Kilpatrick played a charachter called Brains in the show.  When Kylie went to visit the Aussie Troops in East Timor they turned on a Blackhawk to fly her out to visit the then LT Kilpatrick and his Troop from 2nd Cav Regt. (For you civies and US types - trying to organise this sort of thing in the Aussie Army is like getting blood from a stone).  Anyway, the now MAJ Kilpatrick has just deployed to Iraq with the Aussies.  So if this fuckwit wants to apologise - perhaps he could go to Iraq and apologise to Brad ‘Killer’ Kilpatrick and his boys.  I’m sure they would accept his apology after. . .

    (And for those concerned about security, Brad was interviewed on the TV a couple of weeks ago - Lateline I think.)

    And for the ladies - Brad was in Cleo’s eligible Batchelor issue a few years ago.  I don’t know why, but I’m a guy.

    Lastly, my Mum has had breast cancer, so I’m standing in line waiting for this idiot whenever he comes to Australia.

    Posted by Razor on 05/20 at 10:15 PM • permalink

  26. I would like to see someone change the direction of his thoughts from the inside out.Maybe somebody’s son,brother,partner whatever can change his point of view permanently.Kylie is an aussie icon.We love her and unlike the chattering classes she is no tall poppy.

    Posted by on 05/20 at 10:32 PM • permalink

  27. Radio news this morning (no link yet) reported that during the night a group of balaclava-wearing Kylie fans threw eggs at the media mob hunkered outside her parents’ home in suburban Melbourne. One good outcome from this sad affair would be for editors to stop milking every celebrity situation to the last drop. Space filled with file photos and airhead comments from the tenuously linked should be occupied with other news. The Herald Sun, fergawdzakes, devoted nine pages when the story broke. What the hell would they do if the worst happened?

    Posted by on 05/20 at 11:03 PM • permalink

  28. I don;t mind too much.  He was trying to upset people and...look out!...he succeeded

    Posted by murph on 05/20 at 11:25 PM • permalink

  29. The thing about Sid is he doesn’t do this stuff on his own show later in the day on WFAN; his job with Imus is to be the designated politically incorrect talker, along with Bernard McGuirk, the show’s producer. The problem is that while Bernard has some idea of the limits of what he can and can’t get away with, Sid wouldn’t recognize a boundary if you walked him up to the Berlin Wall during the Cold War. He got into truoble a couple of years ago for calling Venus Williams “an animal”, and his Kylie Minogue remark is just another example of his tin ear.

    Fortuantely for Sid, at least in the New York market, his little remark already has been superceeded in the New York tabolids by the firing of a WCBS-TV report for dropping the f-bomb during the station’s 6 a.m. newscast because an intern from the Opie and Anthony Show was holding up a sign promoting the show, at the same time an occasional guest on the Howard Stern Show, Crazy Cabbie, walked by and flipped a finger on-screen as the reporter was talking. The combo prompted a “What the f --- is your problem” from the reporter when he thought they had gone from live feed to taped segment. They hadn’t.

    The reporter’s firing takes the heat off Sid in New York—the media’s after Opie and Anthony now—though Sid wasn’t on with Imus on Thursday or Friday. Of course, if Sid ever gets to cover the Australian Open, there could be problems.

    Posted by on 05/21 at 12:56 AM • permalink

  30. He got into trouble a couple of years ago for calling Venus Williams ``an animal’’, and his Kylie Minogue remark is just another example of his tin ear.

    It’s not a tin ear at all, unless I have it too, unless you mean a tin ear for what makes advertisers nervous.  He sees a line that defends his position when he starts out; whether ``you can say that’’ or not has to do with something else, the occasional mocking of which is the point of the show.

    Imus himself has a million taboos but they don’t mostly align with political correctness.  A few do, and there the show is a disappointment.

    ``Cancer isn’t the only disease, you know’’ on some other topic certainly got to Imus.  Cancer is Imus’s favorite disease so don’t cross him there

    Posted by rhhardin on 05/21 at 09:18 AM • permalink

  31. Listeners of the show know that Sid is an idiot, and Imus never tires of pointing that out, so this is pretty much par for the course.  Sid recently returned to the show after a lengthy bout in drug rehab.

    Posted by Bud Norton on 05/21 at 10:05 AM • permalink

  32. There’s no point in getting indignant when the faeces-smearers get to work, ‘cause that’s just what they want. It’s an easy attention grabber.

    Most don’t hear much of Kylie here in Australia, but she’s still well-liked, as she seems to represent the antithesis of the prima-donna performer and likes to send herself up at every opportunity.

    But this shock-jock or whatever is not talking about a person. Just doing a simulated Tourettes-style outburst for cheap effect.

    Let’s hope those who are otherwise happy to make fun of opponents’ missing testicles, hair-lips etc don’t join the faux outrage.

    Posted by on 05/21 at 10:18 PM • permalink

  33. I’d like to speak directly to the issue.

    Mr. Rosenberg is simply wrong. 

    The woman in question will, in fact, still be pretty when/if she is “bald with one tit” or whatever crass word he may have used.

    She will be beautiful.  Because she will have survived this illness, which is what matters, with, most likely, the human grace and love of life that is natural to human beings, which is what makes us truly beautiful.

    The same can apparently not be said for Mr. Rosenberg.

    Posted by sarah rolph on 05/22 at 12:15 PM • permalink

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