Congratulations to my radio colleague, Larry Kratka, for 25 years on the air in Berkshire County. Larry joined WBEC AM 1420 in September 1985 and made his air debut on Columbus Day of that year. He stayed with ‘BEC until 1992, when syndication bumped his show. Soon after, Phil Weiner at cross-town rival WUPE/WUHN hired Larry as news director. He remained in that capacity (several pints a day, actually) after the stations were purchased by Vox Communications. Vox moved their operations to the studios on Jason Street, ironically where Larry had started. With Vox purchasing several other local stations, Larry took on the added role of news director for the Berkshire News Network, which includes WBEC AM and FM, WUPE AM and FM, WSBS in Great Barrington, and WNAW in North Adams.
The Planet has had the pleasure of doing many shows with The Krat. Being on the air with a partner or sidekick is tricky business. You almost know instantly if it “works” or not. There’s an undeniable chemistry that takes place in the studio that comes across on the air. The Planet has enjoyed such joint ventures with Bob Shade at WBRK. It’s like one side can read the other’s mind. We shall be on with Larry once a month and for special broadcasts such as elections.
Later this month, on 25th, 26th, and 27th (Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday), The Planet shall be moderating state rep debates in the morning on the Vox network. Larry will be producing and freelance journalist Clarence Fanto will help with the questions. We welcome the opportunity. On the evening of the 25th, Yours Truly will moderate a debate among the three candidates running for state auditor.
Anyhow, congratulations, Larry Kratka, on your Silver Jubilee of the Air.
SPANGELO RUMOR and SOLDIER ON — There have been many confirmed sightings of Bigfoot, a.k.a., Angelo Stracuzzi, a.k.a. Spangelo, a.k.a. Stracula, in Pittsfield. Rumors continue to fly that he will end up back in Shire City. One nonsensical tidbit had Spange taking a job at city hall. Trust us on this, there’s no way that can happen, with the disgraced former big cheese of Greylock Federal Credit Union being as toxic as he is.
His toxicity level has a radioactive half life of about 50,000 years. You don’t get caught in the middle of a mess involving accusations of child molestation, convictions on charges patronizing an underage boy for purposes of prostitution, and assault and have it all simply disappear. For once, the maid won’t be there to clean up after him.
The latest unconfirmed tale (it may or may not be tall) has Stacula taking a gig with Soldier On. If he’s hired, the first question should be, “So tell me, daddy, what did you do in the war”?
Bigfoot is determined that “he will not be run out of town” by what happened. Well, guess what, Spange? It’s too late for that. You already were, by Greylock, by John Bissell and the Greylock board, and by every decent person in Pittsfield. Forgiveness? God, yes, but only if you accept it. That only comes after you ask for it and own up to what you did.