2006-03-03 / Front Page

Thirty–Something goes national with Colmes

By Natasha Whitling

Photo courtesy of Fox NewsAlan ColmesPhoto courtesy of Fox NewsAlan Colmes

Alan Colmes, nationally syndicated radio talk show host and co-host of the Fox News show Hannity and Colmes , may be having a mid-life crisis. On Wednesday, February 22, Colmes dedicated the first hour of his show to discussing the merits of his career choices. He wondered if dedicating his career and life to the minutia of hard hitting news and political debate was worth the time and hassle when a show like American Idol regularly enjoys an audience of 33 million, while his show typically has one to two million.

Mike Maddock's February 17 column entitled "Saving the world one milk jug at a time" brought on this self-doubt. Maddock is the award winning writer of a weekly column in The Columbia Star entitled Thirty–Something Speaks. He typically takes a humorous approach and writes about life as a 30–plus year–old–man dealing with everything from potty–training to ear hair. In this particular column, Maddock talked about his reasons for turning off Hannity and Colmes and turning on American Idol.

Maddock says his life is what it is, and wrote, “I don’t have the time or energy to focus on the crisis in the Middle East when Skippy the eight–year–old Casanova is chasing my daughter through the monkey bars.”

Colmes read the column on The Columbia Star website (www.TheColumbiaStar.com) and invited Maddock to be a featured guest on his radio show Wednesday night. When speaking with Maddock about the column, Colmes said, “I just realized I’ve been wasting my life…I spend my days reading up on this stuff and then coming up with show ideas…most of America doesn’t care about this stuff.”

Maddock explained to Colmes, “Ever since 911 hit us, we’ve had hurricanes, tsunamis, war, and even the local news is just murder, murder, murder. Politicians blame each other for the end of the world. I’ve got three kids, a wife, and a dog and a business to run. The downtime is so precious, I don’t want to come home and turn on the TV and see a bunch of politicians yell at each other.”

Colmes’ fans need not worry. The success of his radio and television shows may not rival American Idol’s, but few shows do. He serves a large and very important niche that’s not going away anytime soon. Still, Colmes pondered: “People like me and Hannity come to work everyday and we think we’re talking to America and about the things America cares about. The fact of the matter is, overwhelmingly, people aren’t watching us or listening to us…they’re watching American Idol.”

Colmes went on to tell Maddock, “I think you have a better life because I’m getting caught up in all this stuff. You’ve made me realize my career is a total waste!”

Some conservatives may agree, but Maddock says he could only speak for himself, “Life presents enough challenges. Whether those challenges happen to be crooning little boys or boys stuck at the top of a slide, it’s tough to have the additional worry of the Alaskan Caribou or Iranian nuclear weapons...I’ll just keep recycling my empty milk jugs and do my best to raise three productive members of society.”

Maddock said, “Alan was a perfect gentleman, and I certainly appreciated him dedicating some of his radio show to me. It was overwhelming and completely nerve racking that someone who speaks to the likes of Bill Clinton and John McCain on a daily basis would appreciate my column that way.”

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