Baumhower: My holiday wishesWritten by Jeremy Baumhower | | firstname.lastname@example.org
My favorite part about the holiday season are the wishes. As Toledo children begin to write down their dreams and send off the requests to a man in a red suit, I thought I would save the stamp and print my holiday wishes here for Santa to read … because Kris Kringle is one of Toledo Free Press’ regular readers.
Wish No. 1 — Wi-Fi Toledo: Nevermind the All America City prize; let’s begin the discussions again on how Toledo can be one of the few cities in the country that offers Wi-Fi to everyone.
Wish No. 2 — Silicon Toledo: Please, Mayor Bell, stop taking trips to China to sell our land and start visiting Silicon Valley in California to devise a plan to give it away for free. Toledo needs jobs for the future and we need to start looking in the right part of the world. We already have the empty buildings, the low cost of living and centralized location. If we Wi-Fi’d Toledo and made a unified, intelligent effort, we could lure some startup tech and Web-based businesses here. Don’t you think it’s time for Jeep workers who have sacrificed their bodies for their children’s college education to enjoy their retirement with their grandchildren here in Toledo?
Wish No. 3 — A Tweeting Carty: Twitter was created to provide a simplified method for sharing one’s thoughts with the masses, a “sound bite” in 140 typed characters or less. Toledo has been way too quiet during the past couple of years, notably since Carty Finkbeiner’s exit as mayor. Twitter is the perfect vehicle for Carty to share his thoughts. Let’s be honest, news conferences and live radio interviews never went Carty’s way, and often his message would get lost in a seven-second sound bite. I would like to personally offer my services to help Carty get started on Twitter, and I am more than willing to demonstrate the power of the social network. Toledo media is missing Carty’s words and Toledoans are missing Carty’s passion. Please Carty, call me!
Wish No. 4 — FCC Change Of Heart: Toledo is the prime example of the wreckage the FCC caused when it deregulated radio ownership rules in the late ’90s. My wish is for the FCC to reconsider this act and modify it. Toledo now leads the country in Sirius XM subscriptions due to poor local radio content. If the FCC were to break up these massive upside down radio conglomerates and force the sale of licenses, aka stations, Toledo’s radio programming would instantly improve. Currently, Toledo has two companies owning 95 percent of all local stations. These two companies have way bigger markets to worry about, so mid-size cities like Toledo get lost in the bigger financial schemes of these corporations.
If we had more owners in Toledo, it would drive the competition up therefore creating better content.
Wish No. 5 — A Miracle on LaGrange Street: In August, Ohio released its annual school year report card, where it reveals the results from the Ohio Achievement Test (OATs) and presents them on an individual school basis. Did anybody read this? Let me rephrase my question. Did anybody read outside of what your children’s school did? Well I did, and it has haunted me ever since.
Did you know that 70 percent of third-graders are not reading at the level they should be at Lagrange Elementary? Did you also read that 80 percent of fifth-graders have failed the math portion of the OATs at Rosa Parks Elementary? The state of Ohio uses terms like “Academic Emergency” when it should use “Academic Catastrophe.” I refuse to point the finger as to who is responsible, because eventually we as a city will pay the price.
My wish is to have a volunteer-based program using people who live outside the district to help. If those in the area could help, the problem would be fixed; but because many of those people are concerned about keeping bellies full and a roof over their heads, the children’s education pays the price. We do not need politicians to organize this, we need the “room moms” from achieving schools to divide and conquer. Lagrange and Rosa Parks’ kids need those competitive “room moms” to adopt a classroom and make a real difference.
Wish No. 6 — Voetsch’s Return: WTOL’s Melissa Voetsch has been off the air since October dealing with a health issue, and she is missed. The ironic twist is that the issue causing her absence is why she is so beloved and missed; it’s her heart. Melissa has given so much love to Toledoans her heart was overworked. Please send her some love via email email@example.com. I hope she is not getting used to sleeping in — our mornings miss her.
Wish No. 7 — Walleye Insurance: Someone please purchase health insurance for the Toledo Walleye, because they are playing like they have none. You’ve made the already embarrassing interruption of our National Anthem with the “Go Hit Somebody” chant even more sad. So please, for East Toledo, would you go and hit somebody?
Wish No. 8 — The Return of Aunt Jessie: My personal wish this year is for my sister Jessica to come back home to NW Ohio and live. Great teachers are needed everywhere, especially here, but my children just want their aunt. Stop running and start remembering where your heart is. You have missed too many years, and I do not want it to become a lifetime. Plus, I need help with mom and dad. Our parents are not old, just bored, so please come home so we can figure out a visitation schedule, I have you down for the next three years.
I am probably on Santa’s “naughty” list again this year, but if you are on the “nice” list and share just one of my wishes, maybe just one of them would come true.
Jeremy Baumhower is a self-proclaimed media expert who writes and produces for morning radio shows across the country. For more self-admired brilliance please follow him on twitter @jeremytheproduc.