Why Morons Sometimes Make the Best Radio Hosts


I’m a puncher. Constantly punching around the dial on my drive looking for something amusing or the least common denominator of entertaining. I’m often caught tuning into KLBJ here in Austin for the morning drive show: Mark, Ed & Sgt Sam.

sgtsam0.jpgMark Cesar is the PD of KLBJ and the referee of the morning show. Ed Clements leans a little left of center and Sgt. Sam plays the role of the right-wing/quasi-religous spinster. The show if pretty fast paced with new topics often being spun almost every break. So habitually you will hear the hosts pontificating on a topic and callers referring back to a topic from a half an hour ago. As you might imagine, it can get quite confusing as a listener.

On to the topic of conversation…Sgt. Sam. To paraphrase Obi Wan: “You will never find more wretched jive of muttonheaded vapidity”

KLBJ’s Sgt. Sam is like a bad parody of a moronic Hank Hill without any common sense. I can be assured that every morning if I tune into KLBJ, I will hear something that will make me shake my head in disbelief that anyone could have such a lack of any semblance of critical reasoning or logic as Sgt. Sam. Add to this the fact that Sam’s diction would make George Bush sound like a grammar nazi. Case in point, last week I heard Sgt. Sam pronounce “phlebotomist” as well, pleb-bottom-ust (sort of sounding like hippopotamus with a Texas drawl with that hard P consonant in the beginning). I almost drove off the Mo-Pac in a fit of uncontrollable laughter. Mark Cesar then clarified Sam’s mispronunciation by saying something to the effect of, “Oh, you mean someone who takes blood.”God bless Mr. Cesar. If I had to co-host a show with Sgt. Sam every morning I’m sure I would spend half of the show asking him how he could be so devoid of any logic and if a horse kicked him in the head when he was a child.

The fun part of Sgt. Sam is that the guy, undoubtedly without even trying, is a damn good talk show host. He’s opinionated, sticks to his guns, controversial and is guaranteed to always get a rise out of the listener, one way or the other. Some will listen to Sam because they agree with his down-home, and as they see it, “common sense” approach. Others will listen because they just want to scream and punch the radio because they so handily disagree with Sam. If you’re like me, you may listen because you find his lack of logic so compellingly humorous. But in the end, you’ll listen just the same.

*John Ford is a Broadcast programming professional with nearly three decades of experience in local and network major market radio Programming and Consulting. Including stints as a VP of New Media Sabo Media, Network Programming and Imaging at ABC Radio Networks, Greenstone Media. Programming, Imaging and Morning/Talk positions at WIOD/Miami, WLLZ/Detroit, KZPS/Dallas, The Edge/Dallas, Zeta 4/Miami, WSHE/Miami and others. John’s also an uber-geek who holds numerous Apple Technical Certifications and enjoys breaking and fixing code and kit. Reach him at his website johnford.net.