Bob and Bing. Laurel and Hardy. Abbott and Costello.
Ever notice how the greats always come in pairs? We're not talking about the inferior species of Sidekickus Comedia, either - some schlub licking up the crumbs that fall from the master's comedic table. No! The funniest are always the true partners, who play off each others' strengths and weaknesses like Punch and Judy.
That's why the favorite radio personality this year is actually a twosome: Heather Brown and DC McGhee of Alice 107.7.
Together five years now (Heather was born and raised in Texas, while DC is a Cabot boy made good), Heather and DC's interesting brand of jawbonin' about their hang ups, families and day-to-day lives has made them a part of the morning routine for many in Central Arkansas. Though their viewpoints are often divided by the gulf of gender, they keep it light.
"So many times you go to work and you're afraid to tell people what's on your mind," DC said. "Or in my case, I've offended many people or made them uncomfortable because I say what's on my mind. Heather just laughs it off."
The day we visited, the pair was hip deep in what is often one of their most contentious and funny segments: "Relationship Wednesdays," where listeners call in for advice on everything from bisexual love triangles to their spouse's bathroom habits. It's old hat for Heather and DC. They say the laughter often heard from their studio can turn a bad morning into a good one, and not just for their listeners. A little over a year ago, DC's mother was diagnosed with breast cancer. He said the show helped him get through it. "Coming in here was almost like therapy for me," he said.
Asked why their show is successful, DC admits that he doesn't know if the show fits the definition of success. For him, it's just another day of good-natured arguing with a friend. To keep that spontaneity, nothing is scripted or rehearsed. With a few exceptions like "Relationship Wednesdays," they don't even discuss what they'll be talking about until they hit the air.
"We do a real show," DC said. "Everything we do should be relatable to just about anybody's life." Given that it's all just talk, Heather said she often finds it hard to believe that people want to hear more of it.
"What I really find surprising are the people who say to us, 'I hate it when you play music, I wish you'd just talk.,'" Heather said. "You'd think it'd be the other way around."
When the Centers for Youth and Family contacted Jenia and Arzo Johnson about fostering a sick 13-month-old baby, they were told he had respiratory problems thanks to his underdeveloped lungs, and was on oxygen.
Growing up for any kid is hard, but there is often a special kind of hell for those growing up gay or lesbian in Arkansas. This is the Bible Belt. We're slow to change, and for all our Southern politeness, the prejudices of older folks tend to percolate through the generational strata whether we want them or not.
Juanita's, the venerable Tex-Mex restaurant and music venue, is leaving the South Main Street location it's called home since 1986 for the River Market and the former home of Bill St., 614 President Clinton Ave.
Over the past three years, his Rogers Photo Archive in North Little Rock has been on a buying spree, purchasing the vast photo morgues of 11 great (and greatly cash-strapped) American newspapers, including the Chicago Sun-Times, The Denver Post, the Boston Herald and The Detroit News.