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Does Joseph Like Soap Operas?

Back in the 1930s, Procter and Gamble, the company that makes fantastic products like Crest toothpaste, Tide laundry detergent and Ivory soap, invented soap operas.  The first soap opera was a soap opera called “Painted Dreams,” which premiered on the radio in 1930 … and, for 90 years, we have had some fantastic soap operas on both radio and on TV.

Over the years, I have watched some soap operas, including “The Young and the Restless,” “The Bold and the Beautiful,” “Another World,” “Passions,” “Days of our Lives,” “General Hospital,” “One Life To Live,” “All My Children,” “Guiding Light” and “As the World Turns,” just to name a few.  Only four of these soap operas are still on TV … and you can find them on your local stations on weekday afternoons.

If I have to pick a soap opera that I like the best out of all of them, I would probably have to say “General Hospital.”  It premiered on ABC back on April 1, 1963 … and this is no April Fools’ joke.  Tomorrow, the soap opera will turn 57 years old.  Only “Guiding Light” has reached the 57-year mark on TV.  It did so on June 30, 2009, nearly three months before the show ended its long run.  Two more soap operas aired for 50 or more years.  “Days of our Lives,” which is still on NBC, has aired for more than 54 years … and “As the World Turns,” which ended its run nearly 10 years ago in September of 2010, aired for 54 years.  Now, “Coronation Street,” which airs in England, has been on the air for nearly 60 years.

So, do I like soap operas?  Well, sometimes I do … and sometimes I don’t.  Of course, you don’t have to watch soap operas just on weekday afternoons anymore.  Now that all four soap operas are now viewable both on demand and online, you can watch them anytime, even on weekends.  They’re that good.

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Exciting events Joseph Pratt's interests Joseph's Flashback

Joseph’s Flashback: I heard a classy voice-over artist on FOX 53 whenever I was a kid!

Since October of 1986, WPGH has been Pittsburgh’s Fox affiliate.  At first, FOX only had a late night talk show with Joan Rivers … and, then, it would start airing FOX’s programs for several hours at night, starting in April of 1987.  Over the years, it would start airing programs in various dayparts … and, in primetime, they would start airing shows in primetime every night by 1993.

Now, WPGH is a fantastic station to watch … and, from the late ’80s until around the late ’90s or so, one man did the voiceovers for the promos that aired on FOX 53 every day.  He always did a fantastic job in doing voiceovers for the station.  His name is Bob Karson.  These days, he does a short program called “The Discovery Files,” which is from the National Science Foundation.  Those programs last for about one to two minutes or so.  Mr. Karson is a terrific voice-over artist, no matter what he does.  For example, if you were to watch WPGH in the early ’90s, you would likely hear him say, “You can watch a movie, Sunday afternoons at 2 on FOX 53.”

To say the least, the best years of FOX 53 were the years that featured Bob Karson’s voiceovers in the station’s promos.  If you were watching the station back then, you may have also heard him doing the movie intros, bumpers and outros that WPGH had at that time.

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Exciting events Joseph Pratt's interests

Joseph’s Top Blog Posts For March 2020

The month of March is almost here … and Spring will officially be here in just a matter of weeks.  Today, I’m going to tell you about the blog posts that I’ll be writing down in March.  I already wrote one of these posts down yesterday, but, of course, I hope you will check it out in March anyway.  See if you can guess which one it is before you read this post any further.  I’ll give you the answer in the middle of this post.

At some point in March, I will write my 1,325th blog post … and it will be entitled “Joseph’s 1,325th Blog Post Is About A Classy Shirt!”  I can’t tell you which shirt I’ll be talking about yet.  I can assure you … the shirt that I’ll be talking about in that blog post will be a classy one.  I will give you a hint.  It will be about one of my polo shirts.

Another one of my blog posts is going to be entitled “Derek Papakie Turns 30 Today!”  I wrote this blog post down yesterday, but, of course, I hope you will check it out in March anyway.  In case you haven’t seen it yet, let me tell you what it will be about.  In the post, I wished my cousin and friend, Derek Papakie, a happy 30th birthday.  Derek is a terrific person.

Another one of my blog posts will be entitled “Joseph Puts ‘The Classy Test’ To The Test.”  Now, I will be talking about “The Classy Test” in the blog post … and I will ask you guys questions that are in this test.  Now, I first talked about it in a blog post last March … and I figured I should talk about it again.  I will probably ask myself these questions in the post as well.

Another one of my blog posts will be entitled “Joseph Still Has A Classy Chaps Button-Down Shirt One Year Later!”  I will talk about my plaid long-sleeve Chaps button-down shirt in a blog post in March.  The shirt is very classy, to say the least.

I will also use my blog’s features in March.  Let me tell you how I’ll be using them this time.

Joseph’s Flashback-I heard a classy voice-over artist on FOX 53 whenever I was a kid!
Joseph Has A Question For You-What should Joseph do in his “computer room” in the early evening hours?
Joseph’s Moment Of Peace-My Burt’s Bee Gloves
Let’s Talk About A Past Blog Post-Joseph’s New Classy IZOD Sweater

I hope you will check out at least one of these blog posts in the month of March, including the one that I wrote yesterday.  Did you guess which one it was?  Just scroll up to see the answer.  Enjoy your day!

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Exciting events Joseph Pratt's interests

Joseph Likes To Watch WQED on weekends!

This week, I am giving my computer a break … and, today, I will write a fantastic blog post for you guys.  Earlier this week, I used one of my features in a blog post … and, today, I will talk about something that I like to do on weekends.

Now, on weekends, whenever they’re not showing programs that would air during the pledge drives, I will watch WQED for several hours in various rooms of my house.  Now, on Saturdays, WQED doesn’t show children’s programs on the channel … and I will be able to watch some cooking shows and home improvement shows whenever I get bored.  I will watch it for several minutes at a time between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. on Saturdays … and, then, from around 2 until 5 on Saturday afternoons, I will watch Channel 13 while I use my computer.  The shows are very informative … and I happen to like most of them, especially “This Old House” and “The Woodwright’s Shop.”  Now, on Sunday afternoons, I will watch WQED for at least three hours or so while I use my computer, but, if they’re showing the long-form pledge drive programs, I will watch Create, which is on Comcast Channel 201, if I see anything interesting on there.  On Sundays, WQED airs children’s programs on Sunday morning … and, then, they show local programs for a while.  I’ll watch one or two of their local shows on Sundays, especially if it’s one of Rick Sebak’s programs.  Then, I’ll leave Channel 13 on if I see a show that looks interesting enough for me to watch.  Otherwise, I’ll probably switch over to Create for a while and watch some things on there for a while.

If any of my Pittsburgh friends need something on watch on weekends, since there won’t be too many interesting sporting events on our local channels for a while, may I suggest watching WQED for a while on weekend afternoons?  I know I will do just that.

This Sunday morning, at around 5:00, I will start using my computer again … and, at 7:00 that morning, I will tell you about the blog posts that I’ll be writing down in February of 2020.  Enjoy your day, my friends!

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Exciting events Joseph Pratt's interests

Joseph’s Flashback: Joseph used to watch WQEX a long time ago!

For a few years, Pittsburgh had two public television stations … and they are WQED, which is still Pittsburgh’s public television station, and WQEX, which is now WINP, our city’s ION Television station.  Now, WQEX was on Channel 16 here in Pittsburgh for a number of years … and they aired some fantastic programs, including British sitcoms, shows that weren’t on WQED’s schedule because Channel 13 had no room for them on its schedule and a fantastic show called “AgeWise Weekly” with Eleanor Schano.

Now, in the ’90s, I would sometimes watch WQEX mainly out of boredom.  I would watch some fantastic shows on channel 16, including a fishing show called “Rod and Reel Streamside.”  Now, I also remember some of WQEX’s IDs that they showed in the ’90s.  At least one of them spooked me a little bit, but I think it was pretty neat.  I also remember the music that went with it.  I watch that channel before it started simulcasting WQED for a few years.  After Channel 16 stopped simulcasting Channel 13, it became an affiliate of two different shopping channels, including America’s Store and ShopNBC, which is now ShopHQ.  That is on Comcast Channel 89.  Nowadays, it is an ION Television station … and it is WINP.  WINP is mainly a generic ION station, showing a legal ID at the top of every hour.

Finally, it was airing its programs in black and white as late as the mid 1980s.  From the late ’50s until 1985, it used the old WENS transmitter to air its programs.  Now, WENS was originally on channel 16 back in the 1950s … and, believe it or not, the station had its studios on Ivory Avenue, which is where WPGH and WPNT have their operations today.  I recently saw a video on YouTube … and it showed how WQEX aired its programs in black and white before 1985.  The video was from 1983 … and, three years later, it finally started airing its shows in color.

So, while WQEX has been gone for several years, I can still remember the station for a long time.  WQEX was (and still is) one of the best stations in Pittsburgh.

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Joseph Pratt's interests Not-so-exciting events

Joseph Is Not Watching PCNC Anymore

We are already one week into the year 2020 and the 2020s … and some parts of the new year and the new decade have not been good to me, especially when it comes to the shows and channels that I watch on a daily basis.  On New Year’s Day, I was not able to watch PCNC after being able to do so for the last three or four years or so.  It was on Comcast Channel 35 for a few years or so.  For a few days or so, a message appeared on a black screen while I was able to watch Channel 35 for, maybe, a “split second” or so … and, on Monday, the channel officially disappeared from our cable lineup.  Since I’m not able to watch PCNC anymore, I now have to change my weekday viewing habits a little bit.  In the mornings, I will watch The Hallmark Channel and CNN … and, in the afternoons and the early evening hours, I will watch just CNN.  That may be a good thing for me in this case, because, later this year, CNN will celebrate its 40th anniversary on the air.  CNN is on Comcast Channel 32.  Hopefully, I’ll be able to watch PCNC in one form or another in another location at some point this year, but, until then, I won’t be able to do so in my own home.

Just so you know, PCNC is short for Pittsburgh Cable News Channel … and CNN is short for Cable News Network.

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Exciting events Joseph Pratt's interests

Vanna hosted “Wheel of Fortune” alone last night!

37 years ago this week, on December 13, 1982, Vanna White and Pat Sajak started doing “Wheel of Fortune” together.  At the time, the game show aired on NBC Daytime … and the current syndicated version of the show would premiere a few months later on September 19, 1983.  Now, Pat would actually host the show while Vanna would show us the letters that were in the puzzle board.  Now, if you were watching “Wheel of Fortune” last evening on your local station, you may have noticed something a little bit different.  Vanna was hosting the show alone while Pat was recovering from surgery.  Now, Vanna will host the show alone for the next few days … and, then, as we start both a new year and a new decade, things will be back to normal again.

Now, this will not be the first time that Vanna has hosted the show instead of Pat.  In 1996, she hosted the last few minutes of an episode of the show while Pat had laryngitis.  I don’t usually watch the show by myself, but since last night’s episode of the show was a rather interesting one, I decided to watch the first few minutes of the show on WPXI, which is the station that has been carrying “Wheel of Fortune” in Pittsburgh for more than 30 years.  I just watched the first round of the show yesterday evening … and, in my opinion, Vanna did a fantastic job in hosting the program.  Yes, Pat also does a fantastic job in hosting “Wheel of Fortune.”

So, as the next few days go by, we’ll see how the show goes as Vanna fills in for Pat for the next few days or so.  The show will still be fun to watch, nonetheless.  Yes, she also hosted the version of the game that you would play on CD-ROMs … and I remember seeing her host that version of “Wheel of Fortune” several years ago.

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Exciting events Joseph Pratt's interests Not-so-exciting events

Joseph Recovers From His Oral Surgery

On November 26, 2019, I got two of my upper teeth removed at the oral surgeon’s office in Peters Township, which is in Washington County.  The procedure went very well.  I slept through the surgery.  They put tubes in my nose … and the oxygen went through the tubes.  I also got an IV unit placed inside of my right arm.  They also put certain things on my chest so they could monitor my breathing and my vital signs during my oral surgery.  I fell asleep after my put those things on me and in me.  It took me a while to wake up after the surgery was over.  I don’t even remember leaving the building that the oral surgeon’s office is housed in.  I had some help getting out of that office, though.  I woke up inside of the car after I left the oral surgeon’s office.

After I left the oral surgeon’s office late that morning, I went home and I spent the rest of the day recovering in our two bedrooms.  I started recovering in my bedroom … and, then, about two hours later, I went into another bedroom, where the TV was.  I was able to watch CNN for hours while I was recovering in one of our two bedrooms.  At around 7:00 that evening, I went back into my bedroom … and I stayed in there for the next nine hours or so.  I was back on my feet again the next morning … and, over the next few days, I would start eating more solid foods after taking in mostly liquids just hours after I had my surgery.  I would just eat mainly soft foods at first … and then, I would start eating hard foods again whenever I was able to do so.  I wanted to ease back into them again.  Now, as of today, I’m eating all kinds of foods again.

Of course, I may need false teeth for my upper teeth as early as next year … and I will talk about it in a blog post later this month.

Enjoy your day!

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Exciting events Joseph Pratt's interests Not-so-exciting events

Is 4:30 a.m. too early to watch a newscast?

Since July of 1982, Pittsburgh has had a morning newscast of some kind on at least one of its TV stations.  Now, these are the newscasts that air before the network’s morning programs air.  Newscasts would air at various times between 4:30 and 7 in the morning … and they would air for either one hour, 90 minutes, two hours or 2 1/2 hours.

WTAE gave us Pittsburgh’s first early morning newscast in ’82, but they aired it in two 15-minute blocks.  They aired at 6:15 and 6:45 in the morning … and they were shown during ABC’s “World News This Morning.”  WPXI gave us our city’s first complete 30-minute newscast in October of 1986.  It aired from 6:30 until 7 in the morning back then.  KDKA would start an early morning newscast of its own in 1990 … and it was one hour long.  It aired from 6 until 7 in the morning.

Nowadays, all three of our local stations start their early morning newscasts at or around 4:30 on weekday mornings.  The 4:30 a.m. newscast first came to Pittsburgh in 2010.  In my opinion, I think it might be too early to watch a newscast at that time.  Then again, I’m always up just before that time … and I may watch bits and pieces of an early morning newscast on one of our local stations, if I’m up to it.

I hope you enjoyed my little history lesson in today’s blog post.  Pittsburgh has had early morning newscasts in one form or another for more than 37 years now.  So, maybe I will watch a morning newscast whenever I wake up tomorrow morning.

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Exciting events Joseph Pratt's interests

Joseph Likes “The Brady Bunch!”

50 years ago today, “The Brady Bunch” premiered on television for the first time.  In honor of this special milestone, I’d like to tell you about my experiences of being a fan of this classic TV show.  I would watch the show on Nick at Nite several nights a week whenever I was a teenager … and, then, I would watch it on various other cable TV channels for a few more years after that, including Hallmark Channel, TV Land and Me TV.  This show is one of the best shows of all time … and the show’s characters are all fantastic.

Currently, you can watch “The Brady Bunch” on Sundays from noon until 2 p.m. on Me TV.  You may see an episode that you really like at some point in that time frame.  Now, I don’t really have a favorite character on the show, but I do have a favorite episode of the show … and that would be “Greg Gets Grounded” from the show’s fourth season.  There’s one part of the show that I could relate to in a way.  About halfway through the show, Greg wants his parents to use “exact words” with him so that he would know exactly what they were saying … and, in my case, I would tell my relatives and my friends to use “exact words” with me since I’m autistic.  That’s because autistic people like myself want people to speak with them as clearly as possible, so I can relate to that part of “Greg Gets Grounded” in a big way.

So, today, I would like to wish “The Brady Bunch” a happy 50th anniversary!  Is there an episode of the show that you like … and do you have a favorite character on the show?  Leave a comment if you have a favorite “Brady Bunch” character and/or a favorite “Brady Bunch” episode.