The Insider: Of ‘Tudes and Tunes and Ts

Jun 4, 2007  •  Post A Comment

Random observations and opinions from the CBS affiliates convention last week in Las Vegas:
CBS Interactive President Quincy Smith, CBS Corp.’s fast-rising, fast-talking new-media star, may finally be the casually dressed, running-shoe’d dude who can get the network and its affiliates on the road to digital partnerships.
The CBS affiliates futures committee already is set to meet with Mr. Smith, who works without a teleprompter — not to mention without a pause for breath.
CBS should get T-shirts printed up that say “I only understood about 1/3 of what you said up there. But it sounded good.”
The percentage changed from person to person, but that inevitably summed up the reaction from affiliates and network executives alike in Las Vegas.
Gil Schwartz’s snapshot from his perspective as exec VP of corporate communications for CBS Corp. is an annual must-see.
In the past he’s played such characters as Rocky, a Johnny Carson-like swami and Johnny Cash.
This year, he turned Las Vegas lounge lizard, to warble droll verses about what’s happening at CBS.
The Insider’s favorites included an ode to Jennifer Love Hewitt, whose “Ghost Whisperer” will be paired with the vampire love story “Moonlight” come fall.
Cue the melody for “Witchcraft.”
“Who sees what isn’t there, in flimsy underwear/that makes us stop and stare/it’s Jennifer Love Hewitt,” he sang.
For the hurting fans of the canceled “Jericho,” Mr. Schwartz had this ditty (to the tune of “I’m Sorry”):
“We’re sorry, oh oh … that we canceled … Jericho!/You’ve sent us millions of nuts, it’s really a pain in our butts/But it would have been better if you got together/Before the big upfronts in May/When development season gave reason to send you away/ And made you as righteously pissed off as you are today.”
The niche affiliates audience got a kick out of “Pennies From Retrans” (you can guess the tune):
“Every time it rains, it rains pennies from retrans./Don’t you know each cloud contains many pennies from retrans./Though now it’s just a trickle, just tell yourselves…/It should be a tsunami by 2012…”
He even put the aforementioned Mr. Smith to music, to the tune of “That’s Why the Lady Is a Tramp”:
“He doesn’t tremble when Google gets rude/He’ll talk for hours when he’s in the mood/He’s charming and alarming and calls Les Moonves ‘Dude’/That’s why our Quincy is a champ/He don’t like newbies or boomers or droids/Linear thinking is what he avoids/Sitting still for too long gives him hemorrhoids/That’s why our Quincy is a champ.”
See for yourself:

Where’s Mr. Smith when we need him?
Mr. Schwartz also is at least two-thirds of the way to qualifying as patron saint for gamblers. The Insider testified to his power as a good-luck charm last January at NATPE when she won $600 on a Wheel of Fortune slot machine after an encounter with Mr. Schwartz.
She gave him a noogie in hopes of keeping her win-streak alive, but then didn’t have time for even a brief spin before leaving Las Vegas last week.
But it appears a little bit of Schwartz kibitzing may have helped “CBS Evening News” executive producer Rick Kaplan pick up $1,000 at roulette, which he joked “is a skill game.” He bet on numbers that included his and his two daughters’ birthdates, and Chicago Cubs Hall of Famer Ernie Banks’ jersey number, 14. He also got a couple of “how ya doin’s” from Mr. Schwartz.

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