For several years I’ve taped the annual Super Bowl game, not because I’m a football fan, which I’m not, but because of the commercials.

For several of those years, I’ve watched and noted those expensive ads and done reviews of them. And mostly, nobody cared.

In the past few years, TV watchers and those who write the news about their likes and dislikes have started paying attention to the special bowl commercials, writing about them not only after they’ve aired, but for days and days before the game.

The commercials have taken on a life of their own, becoming more and more expensive and, presumably, more newsworthy.

This year, based on the opinions of a group of friends of mine, I’ve concluded that the most recent game was not only a boring sports contest, but a complete washout commercial-wise.

In keeping with my own tradition, however, I’m replaying the entire event, watching to see if their opinions are correct.

If they are, I think the entire advertising business and the National Football League are going to have to rethink the vast expenses they’re incurring, apparently in vain.

However, in keeping with my own tenuous tradition, I’m still going to comment on some of the ads, mostly because of my favorite.

A guy stranded on a desert island is thrown into an ecstasy of joy with the receipt of a box of goodies that floats up on the shore of his island. They make him feel at home, says the commercial.

Where did they come from? From H-E-B, of course. How grand that a national Super Bowl commercial should come from our own local Texas businesses.

There were a bunch of Bud Light commercials, as usual, all emphasizing the fact that beer has no corn syrup. All in medieval costume. All pretty cute.

Another beer tradition is the appearance of the Clydesdale horses, this time advertising that their beer is made with wind power. I think everybody loves those horses.

Microsoft has one I love. It’s a bunch of handicapped children playing video games. It’s become a part of life these days to emphasize all the things people can do, even when they’re labelled as “handicapped.”

One particularly close to my heart is a message from the Washington Post, which says simply “Knowing Keeps Us Free.”

I’m sick unto death of people who keep saying that so much of the news is “fake” news. I don’t approve of news people who mix opinion in with their news, which is a journalism no-no, but where would we be if we couldn’t learn what’s going on?

The free press are the people who keep us informed. Tweets are the ones who keep us confused.

Cathy Gillentine is a Daily News columnist. She may be reached at

(28) comments

Diane Turski

I support freedom of the press and I value the knowledge the press provides us to protect our own freedoms!

George Croix

"I don’t approve of news people who mix opinion in with their news, which is a journalism no-no, but where would we be if we couldn’t learn what’s going on?"

I agree with that first part, Cathy - they should identify themselves as commentators, and not be anchoring supposedly hard NEWS shows.
Where we part is at the end, because IMO, we DON'T learn what's going on when personal opinion mixes with 'news'...we learn what that person WANTS us to hear, whether factual in, well, fact, or 'personally true' as they see it and want it believed.
It's how the Bandwagon gets jumped on so fast when stuff like the Jussie Smollet accusations hit the fan - the usual suspects WANT you to disapprove of whomever they disapprove of, so they take anybody's unverified word (and this case is STILL in flux, although sure as heck looks to be a Brawley/Sharpton Moment so far....but maybe not...)that supports their personal biases, and run with it on air or in print....tut tutting and cluck clucking about "This is America in 2019....."
Breathtaking bias and stupidity......
The WAPO should give ITSELF 4 Pinocchios for complaining about the mix of opinion and agenda with the actual news and passing that of AS hard news........just the Kavanaugh hearings proved their readiness to create 'fact'.....
As should so many others all over the place....and some readers, too....[wink]

Jarvis Buckley

Ms. Cathy , there is a reason for our Presidents tweets. It's the only way he can get the truth out. Fake news is rampant. Kinda like someone writing an article about the Super Bowl &
It's commercials then taking a backhanded swipe at our hardworking, extremely successful
President. I love your articles you know I do , but your liberal swipes need to stay at your tea & cookie party's .

Carlos Ponce

"I’m sick unto death of people who keep saying that so much of the news is 'fake' news."
Fake news like Trump supported Neo-Nazis, KKK and White Supremacists in Charlottesville.
Fake news like "Hands up, don't shoot".
Fake news like Jussie Smollett was attacked by white people in MAGA hats.
Fake news like the Muslim woman lied about being attacked, called terrorist on subway.
Need more examples?
I think you need to complain to the news agencies putting out FAKE NEWS. In the meantime "CAVEAT LECTOR".

Jarvis Buckley

Carlos Ms. Cathy is a sweet lady. Been reading her articles for years .
I have mentioned to her in my comments many times my thoughts that her left leaning tendencies takes away from her great stories about her
travels down life's highway. I wish she could stop inserting those little
demeaning comments about our
President . But honestly I'll keep reading her articles as long as she can keep writing them.

Carlos Ponce

Agreed. She is a fine lady, a good writer but should as you put it "stop inserting those little demeaning comments about our President" if she doesn't want the readers to respond with a counter point. Fine column until you get to that.

Jarvis Buckley

Agreed Carlos.

Jim Forsythe

No where did she say Trump, when she talked about, "I’m sick unto death of people who keep saying that so much of the news is “fake” news. I don’t approve of news people who mix opinion in with their news, which is a journalism no-no, but where would we be if we couldn’t learn what’s going on?"

"The free press are the people who keep us informed. Tweets are the ones who keep us confused."
As a journalist, she was trained to require checking stories before they are sent out to the public as fact.
Would you expect her to say, I know that tweets are facts, because they are checked by multiple sources before they are sent out.
How many tweets have been fact checked by one independent source, let alone three.
She was talking about “fake” news and tweets by all, not just Trump.

Steve Fouga

She's talking about the Russian Twitter posts that persuaded gullible voters to vote for Trump during the 2016 election.

Carlos Ponce

Steve posts: "She's talking about the Russian Twitter posts that persuaded gullible voters to vote for Trump during the 2016 election."
Who says Russian Twitter posts persuaded anyone to change their vote?
Not James Clapper. "They did not change any vote tallies or anything of that sort," Clapper said under questioning from Chairman John McCain (R.-Ariz.).
Neither did National Security Agency Director Admiral Michael Rogers nor FBI director James Comey, nor the Senate Intelligence Committee.
Steve Fouga, can you find ONE person out of 62,984,828 Trump voters who was persuaded to vote that way after reading Russian Twitter? And please provide evidence?

Steve Fouga

I probably could, Carlos, if that were my job. Relatively easy task. Various federal security agents will eventually do it. If not that, then academic studies of the Russian attack on our election will find them.

Until then, just take my word for it. Common sense says it happened. Not to you, of course, because you had decided to vote for a Republican no matter what, no matter how incompetent and dangerous. You were duped before the Russian attack!! [scared]

Carlos Ponce

In other words, Steve found NO ONE out of the millions of Trump voters!
"Common sense says it happened." No it doesn't.
"Until then, just take my word for it." Why???????
With all the NEGATIVE propaganda spread about Trump in 2016, those who voted for him would not do so at whim or at the suggestion of an obscure Twitter feed read only by a few thousand in this country.

Steve Fouga

You are correct that i haven't found anybody. I haven't looked. I'll put the same challenge to you: prove that none of the 60M+ Trump voters were influenced by the Russian attack. Much harder task.

Carlos Ponce

" prove that none of the 60M+ Trump voters were influenced by the Russian attack. Much harder task."
So far I've found ZERO who even read the Russian twitters.

Jim Forsythe

Steve, hope you like these songs.
Gin sounds a lot like Amy Winehouse. This is the only song of hers so far, that I really like .
Gin Wigmore - Hey Ho (Official Video)

To me, Sonny Boy Williamson is soul and cool at the same time.
Sonny Boy Williamson - Keep it to Yourself
BLACKBERRY SMOKE is friends with the Allman Brothers and others. It's comes across in the music.
BLACKBERRY SMOKE | One Horse Town - In The Backyard Sessions
Blackberry Smoke - Ain't Much Left Of Me from Southern Ground Studios (Acoustic)

Steve Fouga

Well as usual your selections don't disappoint! I hadn't heard of Gin Wigmore, but great song! Her weaponry alone is worth seeing the video for. And Sonny Boy is awesome. If you knew of that song, you've probably heard this, but just in case:

As for Blackberry Smoke, well DAMN! I love that rock/country cross! I would call those two songs Americana, because they're hard to classify otherwise. I'll need to check out their albums, and it's likely you've cost me a few bucks, again. [smile]

Hearing these bothers me in a way, because our son is a very talented singer-songwriter-producer, and our daughter a talented writer -- and it's SO hard to be recognized and profitable in those fields -- like these excellent artists. But they're workin' on it. I was a fair-to-middlin' engineer, and made millions! NOT!! [beam][cool]

Jim Forsythe

Sometimes when you listen to the same song by someone else, it becomes different.
This is one of those cases if you compare to Led Zeppelin versions to Willie's take.
As Keep it to Yourself was written by Willie Dixon specifically for Otis, whom Willie saw tore up over a relationship means that the way Otis sang it, may have been how Willie intended it to sound. But I bet that he enjoyed the differences in the music he wrote, as he wrote other songs for Led Zeppelin

Another example of Willies songs sounding different is "Howlin' Wolf - I Ain't Superstitious" versus how "I Ain't Superstitious , Jeff Beck " are the same song ,but different.

The success of others in music shows that if you work at it, you can also succeed.
If your son and daughter enjoy making music and writing, they are rich.
If all in life that is important is Millions, we are all broke.

Steve Fouga

I had never heard the Willie Dixon version of "Bring It on Home," even though he wrote the song. But now, because of this thread I looked it up, and you're right -- it's different from both the Led Zep and Sonny Boy versions. I guess that's even more true of covers of the older blues classics -- Statesboro Blues, House of the Rising Sun, Cross Road Blues, Love in Vain... Changes in technology, recording techniques, prevailing styles, circumstances of the players, etc.

We're trying to convince our son that performing covers is a legitimate pursuit; an artist doesn't have to write literally everything they perform and, in fact, the very best ones don't!

Jim Forsythe

Steve, Willie Nelson preforms his own stuff as well as others songs, plus writes for others.Just because you sing others songs , does not mean that you cannot perform your own songs . Until one becomes well know. it is hard to get play time for your songs. But if he will sing other people songs, he may get the notice he needs and at that time start introducing his music. Tell him it is not selling out, but it's giving his music a chance. Has he recorded anything and placed it on U tube, as it would get some air time, and who knows what could happen.
Just as you and I have looked at different singers, bands, some new ones were discovered by us, because they were singing the same song you and I were looking at.
If what one is doing now is not working, change, if you want a different outcome.
If someone is asked who were the Moving Sidewalks, most people would not know that they were the base of ZZTop. The Moving Sidewalks future ZZ Top guitarist, Billy Gibbons. The band consisted of Gibbons on guitar, Don Summers on bass, Dan Mitchell on drums and Tom Moore on keyboards. Jimi Hendrix started that Gibbons was slated to be the next big thing as a guitarist which he said after Jimi and the Moving Sidewalks toured together.
When ZZTop started they had Gibbons, bassist/organist Lanier Greig and drummer Dan Mitchell but thing changed because of different reasons. The music business is about change or you will get left behind.

Steve Fouga

Jim says: "If what one is doing now is not working, change, if you want a different outcome."

AMEN!! [thumbup][thumbup][thumbup][thumbup][thumbup]

George Croix

The kicker there is to change to something that has a positive different outcome, not a negative one....unless one is a masochist, or just likes to roll the dice and see what happens....[beam][beam][beam]

George Croix

Jim and Steve..., I'm thinking ssuuuurrrre...that must be the case................
The Rooskies and General Tweeters.....
Any other connections are puuuurrrrely coincidental......
Glad that's all settled........[beam][beam][beam][beam][beam][wink][rolleyes][whistling]

I learn something new here everyday.....

George Croix

I had the great pleasure of meeting Ms. Gillentine personally years ago, at a Union Carbide Community Advisory Panel meeting waaay back when some employees and us spouses were included.
Zero animus here....

Steve Fouga

I've never had the pleasure, but I can tell she's a nice person and obviously an engaging writer. Wish I could do that!...

Steve Fouga

George, my comment was a little bit tongue-in-cheek, and a little bit not. I doubt Ms Gillentine meant the Russians... but I did.

George Croix

At this point, Steve, the Democrat operatives in Alabama and the DNC/Clinton Campaign nationally, either adopting Russian bot techniques or dealing with them directly for dirt buying, have done more to directly influence elections from the inside, where it's most effective, than the Russinas form outside, where they've been at it for decades. Worked in Alabama. Not so much nation wide..... [wink]

Steve Fouga

I don't disagree with your last statement. I think the bot/troll attacks were quite localized.

Very disappointing about the Alabama election. Same with the NC voting misdeeds.

George Croix

It appears that Khrushchev and his shoe pounding on the lectern were pretty good predictors of how America will fall when it does...we'll eat ourselves from the inside out.........
The current bunch of 'new faces' are showing a positively cheerful and enthusiastic desire to accomplish that.....and the older faces seem to not know what to do about that.....

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.

Thank you for Reading!

Please log in, or sign up for a new account and purchase a subscription to read or post comments.