PLANET VALENTI News and Commentary

Joe’s in, Dan Maybe, but Where the Heck is Pete?

(FORTRESS OF SOLITUDE, SATURDAY, SEPT. 10, 2011) — As most of you know, THE PLANET invited The Big Three mayoral candidates — Peter Marchetti, Dan Bianchi, and Joe Nichols — to an informal “discussion” on issues. It would be held on friendly, neutral ground with no audience. Just four people chatting about the issues in the campaign. We would invite the press and post a story of our own. We thought this would provide voters with a unique look at the three top contenders.

Joe Nichols responded first, with a yes. By the Friday, 10 a.m. deadline (yesterday), Dan Bianchi answered this way:

“Dan, I feel a little uncomfortable doing this without inviting every candidate.  It worked out well last time in that your program came after the primary.  Would everyone show?  Your thoughts.

“Thanks for your efforts Dan.”

— o —

THE PLANET’s thoughts are these, which we share simultaneously with our readers:

We hope you reconsider, Dan. We shall likely be having this discussion at a date we work out with the only candidate who responded, Joe. You will be welcome to attend. Get in touch.”

Folks, you may have noticed that one name is missing: Marchetti’s. Why didn’t he respond? We cannot say. We are not privy to his thinking or to the advice he’s getting from his campaign. We can say, however, that if he was advised to NOT RESPOND, he’s getting bad advice.

At least Bianchi had the courtesy to give us a response, if not an answer. The next move is up to Pete. If he simply ignores this and pulls a No Show, he comes off as tenuous, defensive, and scared. Is he all of that? We can only judge by actions.


In Memoriam

We won’t make a Hollywood production out of it, as the mainstream media is doing, nor will we get all patriotically gooey, but we do say that we will pause tomorrow to reflect on the events of Sept. 11, 2011.

On that day, THE PLANET was in the middle of “The Dan Valenti Show.” We got a phone call from a listener who asked if we knew what was happening in NYC. The next call said a plane crashed into the Pentagon. We were then handed a handwritten note with sketchy details and then covered the story on the fly until we would patch into the raw CBS feed. It was one of the most surreal days we ever spent in a broadcast studio.

We will not get into any politics here. We simply wish to offer prayers to all who lost their lives; to their families, friends, and loved ones; and to all who were directly involved in that scary day. We also offer thanks to all the men and women who responded to people and places trapped by terrorism in a place and time of desperate need.


Is That Any Way to Run an Organization?

As we continue to look into the situation of the Pittsfield Colonials and explore the decision to abandon Pittsfield for home playoff games, THE PLANET has been in contact with lots of people, including sources with inside information and familiarity with what went on this year with the team.

We share this story harvested recently. We let you draw your own conclusions. We will only say that, if this story accurately portrays what happened, it provides a taste of the ownership group. THE PLANET invites anyone who has differing depictions of this event to share them with us.

Hello Dan:

“As you may or may not know, none of the Pittsfield players have received the last regular season pay check. …
“Additionally, a pitcher by the name of Mike Zenko recently had his father develop a rather serious illness.  Mike, who earns roughly $800 per month, flew to Florida to tend to his dad.  The trip cost him $650.  Needless to say, Zenko can’t afford this. … I am well aware that an organization does not generally pick up an expense such as this.  However, I think in this situation and exception can be made. …  Well, sir, it was handled alright.  Mr. [Bob] Seaman [Colonials’ owner and chairman] kept referring to [Zenko] as “Number 23” and told the young man that the team doesn’t condone someone taking a trip during the season.  Come on, it isn’t like the kid took a cruise to Bermuda.  He had to deal with his fifty-two year old father with a blood clot in his brain.
“By the way, you’re one hundred percent correct.  The Colonials will cease to exist the day after their season ends.”


Spongebob Me No Howdys, OK?

Finally, we share this guest post from one of the best bloggers in the country, Mark Murphy, who writes Murphy’s Craw.


Special to PLANET VALENTI Features

Fame is fleeting, even if you’re made of clay

By now you may have heard about the inept robber who put on a Gumby costume and tried to hold up a Southern California convenience store, only to flee after he not only didn’t get anything but managed to drop 26 cents on the floor.

This news by itself was probably distressing enough to the world’s most famous Claymation character, but according to a San Diego TV station, the store clerk made things worse by describing the robber as a “green SpongeBob SquarePants.”


Something tells me that Gumby isn’t getting much sympathy at The Old Children’s Characters Home:

“Yeah, tell me about it,” Howdy Doody is saying. “I knew it was all over when people started thinking I was Davey of ‘Davey and Goliath.’ Yeah, right, and me with strings — not one of them stop-motion animation nerds. I once decked a guy for mixing me up with that twerp and I caught all sorts of hell. Hey, if he didn’t want to keep his lip zipped he at least should have been wearing his clerical collar!

“And by the way,” Howdy continues, “God help you if you ever run into Jerry Mahoney and call him Danny O’Day.”

Which, of course, prompts O’Day’s Nestle’s Quik sidekick, Farfel (“CHAWK-Lit!”), to bitch for the umpteenth time about how people get him confused with Mighty Manfred the Wonder Dog, even though Farfel is a ventriloquist’s dummy and Mighty Manfred is a toon.

All of which causes Donald Duck to crow about how nobody ever gets him, Mickey, Pluto or Goofy confused with anyone else because the Disney folks made them all unique and were branding their creations ages before “branding” became a buzzword.

Which leads everyone else to say “What? What’d he say? Never can understand a word he’s saying! And if he’s going to keep trying to pass himself off as a sailor, he could at least have the decency to put on a pair of pants!”

Thanks to Mark Murphy for a hilarious post. Check out his blog at






  1. Brian Cubbison
    September 10, 2011 at 7:18 pm #

    The people of the Syracuse area are very familiar with the headline-grabbing exploits of Clay Man.

  2. On the Q-T
    September 10, 2011 at 7:22 pm #

    Pete’s quaking in his boots, he’s afraid of facing questions from valenti in a “relaxed” format like this. 10 to 1 that he claims he won’t do it because all five candidates werent invited which is a crock because walto is a drunk and filio is a dems and does . No chance.
    Loved the gumby article! Thankx for posting mr. Murphys work.

  3. Luxor Rex
    September 10, 2011 at 8:05 pm #

    Can’t help but get in on this. Seems like Marchetti’s not going to show. Like you said, a no show. Oh no, not another No Show!!! Priase to joe nichols for saying yes. I like joes entire approach, not just saying yes to being interviewed. I like the way he’s open and honest. I have a lot of respect for bianchi, but marchetti, no way. no show, No way.

  4. Dsusty
    September 11, 2011 at 1:22 am #

    If a person is running for mayor, and is reluctant to do a public discussion, it should send up a BRIGHT RED WAVING FLAG to voters looking for an honest open candidate. I would think a candidate who had nothing to hide and nothing to fear would jump at the chance present his ideas to the voters.

    And any excuse presented at this late date is bullshit.

    • danvalenti
      September 11, 2011 at 9:07 am #

      I agree.

    • Steve Wade
      September 11, 2011 at 10:54 am #

      Maybe he just wants to talk to the REAL MEDIA!

      • Dusty
        September 11, 2011 at 1:56 pm #

        Oh….you must mean the right arm of the GOB,,,,,the Berkshire Eagle

        how foolish of me

        • Steve Wade
          September 12, 2011 at 5:01 am #

          No. Have you ever heard radio?

          • Jim Gleason
            September 12, 2011 at 7:03 am #

            I’ve heard radio but the only good radio in the Berkshires is the rock and roll on WTBR and its disc jockeys such as Mike Pezzo and Shane Gaetani.

      • Luxor Rex
        September 11, 2011 at 6:47 pm #

        That’s just it, Wade. Valenti is the only REAL MEDIA in Berkshire County. The BB? Toady kiss ups. Everyone else: afraid in a tight commercial market. Planet has no commercial biases and the only one free to tell it like it is and the only one with the balls to write the truth. Face it Wade, he’s in your head!!

        • Steve Wade
          September 12, 2011 at 5:05 am #

          Rex or is it Dan? Talking to a blogg is not going to get you votes. If you check the names of the bloggers its realy only about 6 or 7 people who blogg I personaly use 6 different names…..

  5. rick
    September 11, 2011 at 1:36 pm #

    its kind of a smart tactic for pete, i think he should lie low through the whole process, answer the least amount of questions and be as vauge as possible…. he cant do that with mr. valenti…. as he should have learned with the larded wonders re election that if you hide,and dont answer questions these idiots voters will elect you….. a vote is a terrible thing to waste.

  6. Real Deal 2
    September 11, 2011 at 4:46 pm #

    ***Taking a 360 degree turn from all of this, excellent job to the Pittsfield Police for solving a triple murder. Unfortunately, like most of us thought, the three victims were not found alive. Like somebody wrote on Topix, it’s time to put that scum Adam Hall and his accomplaces away forever. It’s also time for the three victims families to bring a large class action lawsuit against Hall and the Hells Angels and put them in bankruptcy. *** Again, a lot his been said both good and bad about PPD, but they get kudos on this one!!

  7. Monitor
    September 11, 2011 at 7:17 pm #

    The forum should prove interesting with Joe Nichols reciting like a broken record his so called 16 lame promises and bad mouthing everything, blaming the good old boys with the same tired worn out BS.

    • Merrimack
      September 12, 2011 at 7:12 am #

      Are you one of the good ol’ boys? Sure sounds like it. Joe is a good guy with good intentions but Bianchi is the only truly qualified candidate for Mayor of Pittsfield. Marchetti is a Ruberto clone who is on the fence trying to please everyone but you have to take a position at some point. Dan B. should be and will be our next Mayor.