Lujack, back center, poses for a picture with the “This is Why We’re Not in a Visual Industry” players. Not sure how an attractive lady ended up in the mix. See, this is why I’m against Affirmative Action, it really throws off the chemistry of a group like that.
Chicago radio legend Larry Lujack, considered the precursor to the modern shock jocks that have kept us so thoroughly entertained with a steady stream of fart-centric hilarity lo these last couple decades, died on Wednesday of esophageal cancer. This after the Chicago Tribune corrected its originally reported cause of death, which was “the pungent, creeping atrophying of all things related to radio, as the final desperate vestiges of a once relevant industry shambles, vacant-eyed and culturally impotent, towards the spiraling oblivion of total and complete obsolescence.” Good call on the rewrite, Tribune. That shit got pretty dark, even by Chicago standards.
That’s right, we’re mocking radio today: The medium of choice for people who desperately need to know what the roads looks like in the morning but would rather wait through a Twofer Tuesday Doubleshot of Van Halen classics instead of checking their phone. Because traffic and weather on the 8s after an ad for discount carpet treatment is the real information superhighway!
[Lujack and co-host Tommy Edwards] started doing their signature bit, “Animal Stories,” at WLS in the late 1970s. “Uncle Lar” would read offbeat news about animals to his sidekick, “little snot-nosed Tommy,” who would be hearing them for the first time. Their spontaneous chemistry made the live bits a hit with listeners, and an enduring chapter in Chicago radio history.
Despite what unscrupulous bloggers like me from earlier in this post like to imply, Lujack didn’t really engage in the crass put-em-on-the-glassisms of later shock jocks, usually opting to pull out of a tailspin before things got particularly tasteless. He even half-joked that he’d like to personally buy back every copy of his autobiography Superjock, largely because he found the vulgar language embarrassing in retrospect. Of course, that’d be borderline impossible. Lujack would’ve had better luck just trying to remove the offensive bits from future printings, like they did with all the racist stuff in Huckleberry Finn. Or the time Gabriel Garcia Marquez had to rewrite part of One Hundred Years of Solitude after he erroneously implied that the Muisca people were conquered by Gonzalo Jimenez de Quesada in 1536, when every backwoods, inbred hick knows that the Spanish Empire didn’t make their way to Colombia’s Cordillera Oriental until 1537. Ha! See you on the shortbus, Marquez, you clueless dolt! Also, I heard that the second printing of the Bible took out a whole passage about Job calling God an “ass bucket.” In that light it really looks like he was bringing shit on himself if you ask me.
Source: The Chicago Tribune