Thursday, January 3, 2013

The boys playing trains. Sometimes it works, sometimes it
doesn't.... the boys playing together, not the train.
On September 4, 2012, ABC day-time talk show Live! with Kelly changed the name of the show to Live! with Kelly and Michael as the show announced a permanent co-host for the chair next to Kelly Ripa. Fifty-nine bottoms sat in that chair over the last year after long-time co-host Regis Philbin retired. The show can be traced as far back as 1975, but it is not recognizable until 1981 when Philbin and Cynthia Garvey hosted a New York show. Two co-hosts later, Philbin finally sat next to Kathie Lee Johnson (Gifford) as the show aired nationally and took over day-time talk shows in the ratings. After 12 years together, Gifford succumbed to public harassment for personal events and quit the show. Philbin and the executive producer decided to be patient in finding the right yin to Philbin’s yang, so they implemented a format first used by Night-time talk show great Johnny Carson – The Guest Host. Carson’s chair was warm with guest hosts, some of which went on to have their own show… or his show, like Jay Leno who took over the Tonight Show from Carson. Philbin’s solo ratings rose as a variety of celebrities temporarily stepped on stage with him. So, when time came for Philbin to go, the format was resurrected for Ripa. Michael Strahan, a former defensive end for NFL’s New York Giants, co-hosted 15 times with Ripa over the past year and proved a ratings pleaser within the target age range. I can’t say that I’m a fan of the show. But the times the show was on while I was on the elliptical machine at the gym, I liked it. That is as long as they weren’t talking about cooking or purses… or as long as the guest wasn’t Michael Moore, Barbara Streisand, or Jamie Lee Curtis. But the variety with having a guest hosts kept the decades-long show interesting and even gave it a little boost. So, I am super excited to announce that I will have some “guest bloggers” on the site so that I can free up some writing time for my book project. I have asked several people to submit a post and I’m excited to get it going– I can sense that some of you are bored! I’ve started out with only a handful of people, but if it is going good, and someone else out there has something to say, let me know. The subject-matter is open; it doesn’t have to be about Eli. I’m working back through posts of the last year, trying to shape them all into book form. I plan for all the proceeds to go to St. Jude, so I am hopeful that it will be interesting. I have an editor friend who is donating her time to babysit me and my grammar mishaps. But time is such an issue for me. It has been difficult to write of current happenings for the blog, while reliving past events and writing about that, too. My plan is to have a guest blog post once a week. I’ve started out with a variety from my “Friend’s List,” but I hope to add to that in a while.
Eli just seems so normal; I can’t wipe the smile off my face. I am truly, genuinely enjoying my children these days. He and Vic are headed to the UT vs. Memphis basketball game in Knoxville tomorrow night. Eli is going to be allowed to stand in the tunnel and “high-five” the team as they take the court. Vic is almost beside himself excited. We are preparing for Eli to begin school on Monday. His teacher is a doll and so kind and sympathetic toward him. He might only stay half of a day for a little while, but she has worked it all out perfectly for him. I will never be able to say enough about our school and the people there. What they have done and are doing for one little boy is amazing.

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