Tag Archives: Ray Stevens

What did we learn today with Big John & Ramblin’ Ray? (8-16-18)

Big John and Ramblin’ Ray recap today’s show with their ‘What did we learn today?’ segment. Asking Executive Producer Tony Lossano, Technical Producer Michael Garay, and Associate Producer Kimberly Kaczmarek what they’ve learned. Today’s show covered what you should do if you think it’s time to leave your current job, a video that John and Ray came across a very disgruntled man, plus the passing of Aretha Franklin.

Why is John’s father being censored?

Big John and Ramblin’ Ray comment on the photo of John’s father that is being cropped in the paper’s obituary for him having a beer in his hand.

Here’s the image:

Listen to them wonder why they decided to cop the beer:


Charles C. Howell

Charles C. Howell passed away July 3rd, 2018 in Holland, Michigan. A life, well lived, age 86. He shuffled off this mortal coil in the same manner he lived, at home surrounded by family; his wife Janet, and children, John and Linda Howell. Always insistent on being well groomed, he died almost immediately after a fresh haircut and shave.

Chuck was proud to be a husband, father, grandfather, uncle, loyal friend, and dedicated pharmacist.

His last 3 decades were blessed by the love and companionship of his wife Janet. Both born in Albion, Michigan, their families knew each other. In fact, Janet’s mother signed the hospital papers announcing Chuck’s birth in 1931. Fortuitously, both Chuck and Janet settled separately in Holland. In 1984, a well-timed phone call lead to an immediate and serendipitous date. They attended their first MSU football game, then continuing for the next 25 seasons. They were married in 1989 on a hot summer day, with almost the entire city attending. Janet’s community of fellow teachers along with his wide circle of friends made for an overwhelming response, not to mention several code violations. Chuck and Janet just celebrated their anniversary on July 1st. Together they’ve traveled extensively and lived life to the absolute fullest for 29 wonderful years.

As the center of an extended family, Chuck cherished time with his 5 grandsons: Will, William, Andrew, Dan, and Chris (each was forced to endure Chuck’s highly embarrassing, quite inappropriate, “talk” on “romance”); stepchildren John Lightfoot (with whom he watched many ball games), and Sue Peffers (who accompanied Chuck and Janet to the casino and prudently monitored the wagering); visits with his sister and brother in law, Virginia and Tony Egnatuk of East Lansing, his sister-in-law Shirl Macqueen of Holland, and numerous nieces and nephews.

Chuck met his first wife, Kathrynne Macqueen at Holland’s Temple Building. This chance meeting led to his frequently offered phrase: “Always be prepared for the unexpected opportunity.” Together until her death in 1982, Kay brought Chuck into the Macqueen family where he happily remained for life, loved by scores of nieces and nephews. For decades the entire family would head north to Walhalla, Michigan, completely filling every cabin at the Fair Oaks Resort. Fishing, sailing, swimming, cards, along with much food and drink bonded the group forever. Chuck provided many bandages, ice packs and even performed amateur surgery when needed. The scars from his fishing line sutures are still visible on several nephews today.

While family was the center of Chuck’s focus, his career was a close second. He interrupted his education at University of Michigan to serve in the Army Air Corps during the Korean Conflict. Thankfully, he was never shot down. Primarily because he wasn’t a pilot and was stationed in Detroit.

Chuck arrived in Holland in 1956 from Ferris State College and begin his long career in America’s most trusted profession – Pharmacy. He spent 50 years tending to the needs of his customers. To hear him describe his career, it was a lifetime of “stomping out disease and pestilence”. In all honesty, he also traded in beauty products and milkshakes, with good humor and sound advice dispensed at no extra charge. A fixture first at Hansen Drug Store before spending decades manning the mortar and pestle for Meijer’s, he retired in 2006. As a matter of pride, his pharmacy licenses were kept up to date. He was a lifelong member of the Masonic Lodge, and never divulged the handshake.

After retiring, Chuck attempted many home improvement projects with his daughter Linda, several of which came quite close to almost being successful. You see, Chuck had a lifelong aversion to reading instructions or hiring professionals. His frequent visits to Linda’s home, ostensibly to help with chores, were more often utilized for long naps while “watching” the Detroit Tigers. He also helped friends weather health issues. His devotion to his mother Lucille Howell and Janet’s parents, Fred and Alice Houseman, was an inspiration to all. He celebrated his long friendship with his late comrade Don VanHuis by incessantly searching for good coffee and fresh rhubarb pie.

Chuck also holds the record for listening to the same radio host for 35 years. His oft repeated critique: “Why must you always argue with the listeners?”

Janet and Chuck enjoyed extended trips to visit John and Anne Lightfoot in Boston, Sue and Gary Peffers in Indianapolis and John and Sarah Howell in Chicago. Summers were spent with friends Cliff and Nancy Ponstein in Bear Lake, Michigan. They spent winters in Florida enjoying their timeshare and viewing nightly fireworks from Disneyworld. By the way, if you’re interested in a Florida timeshare the family has a terrific deal for you. No reasonable offer will be refused.

The family is grateful to our friend Hawa Afrik and to Hospice of Holland for making his final days peaceful and pain free. In lieu of flowers please donate to Hospice of Holland in honor of a life, well lived.

Chuck’s family is planning a celebration of the joy he brought, the kindness he inspired, and the integrity with which he lived his life.

Pearl Jam under fire over poster depicting Trump’s corpse, burning White House

Grunge rockers Pearl Jam are in hot water over a concert poster depicting a burning White House with an eagle picking at a skeleton that has hair like President Donald Trump.

The poster also features an endorsement of Democratic Sen. Jon Tester and a note from the bassist on the back that calls him “the real deal.”

Tester is depicted as an Evel Knievel figure, leaping over the flaming White House on a tractor. But the part of the image getting the most attention is the skeleton on the front lawn. It has a Trump-life coif and holds a briefcase bearing a Soviet hammer and sickle.

We never saw the poster before the show, and we don’t like it,” Tester spokesman Chris Meagher told the Washington Post. “And we don’t condone violence of any kind. Period.”

Learn more from the Huffington Post.

What did we learn today with Big John and Ramblin’ Ray? (8-15-18)


Big John and Ramblin’ Ray comment on what they learned on today’s show with their ‘What did we learn today?’ segment. Asking Executive Producer Tony Lossano, Technical Producer Michael Garay, and Associate Producer Kimberly Kaczmarek what they’ve learned. Today’s show covered the growing acceptance of tattoos in the workplace, Omarosa and her misspeaking on killings that happened in Chicago over the weekend, and a dating app advertising with the phrase ‘DTF’.


Today’s Facebook Live:

What did we learn with Big John & Ramblin’ Ray? (8-14-18)


Big John and Ramblin’ Ray comment on what they learned on today’s show with their ‘What did we learn today?’ segment. Asking Executive Producer Tony Lossano, Technical Producer Michael Garay, and Associate Producer Kimberly Kaczmarek what they’ve learned. Today’s show covered a health update on Aretha Franklin, Sacha Baron Cohen’s newest episode of ‘Who is America?’, and a break down of top selling artists by states.

Some parents consider bulletproof backpacks for new school year

Among the school supplies on many parents list, this year is bulletproof backpacks. The backpacks are made out of Polyethylene material that is lightweight and durable, allowing it to integrate into the backpack seamlessly.


Big John and Ramblin’ Ray talk more about bulletproof backpacks for this school year:

Omarosa’s secret recordings with Chief of Staff John Kelly and President Trump


Big John and Ramblin’ Ray break down Omarosa’s recorded conversations between her and Chief of Staff John Kelly in the Situation Room. Plus a recorded call between her and President Trump where he speaks upon how he didn’t want her to be gone.


What did we learn with Big John & Ramblin’ Ray? (8-13-18)


Big John and Ramblin’ Ray comment on what they learned on today’s show with their ‘What did we learn today?’ segment. Asking Executive Producer Tony Lossano, Technical Producer Michael Garay, and Associate Producer Kimberly Kaczmarek what they’ve learned. Today’s show covered the airplane that was taken by one of its employees, Omarosa and her taped conversations with President Trump, and the remembrance of Stan Mikita over the weekend at the United Center.

Seattle airline employee steals a plane; raising questions on airline security.


Big John and Ramblin’ Ray talk with meteorologist and pilot Brant Miller. He helps break down how Richard Russell was able to steal this plane and get the plane off the ground, with clips from the incident itself. Plus stating the big statement that this is going to make airlines be more secure in who they hire.


What did we learn with Big John & Ramblin’ Ray? (8-3-18)


Big John and Ramblin’ Ray comment on what they learned on today’s show with their ‘What did we learn today?’ segment. Asking Executive Producer Tony Lossano, Technical Producer Michael Garay, and Associate Producer Kimberly Kaczmarek what they’ve learned. Today’s show covered the 125th anniversary of Vienna Beef, and how Ray is trying to get his mothers new house being made.

Willie Wilson: “Every sunday I’m somewhere giving away money”


Big John and Ramblin’ Ray are joined by Mayoral Candidate Willie Wilson after he’s been said to be giving away money again, this time in checks. But now a reform group has filed a complaint about Willie Wilson, saying they think he’s trying to buy his support.

Bill Cameron: “People with sexual misconducts in their backgrounds still run for office.”

Big John and Ramblin’ Ray are joined by Bill Cameron, from Connected to Chicago, where they talk about the latest on mayoral candidate Willie Wilson and his latest hand out of money. Then they dive into the Representative who recently resigned after sexual misconduct issues came to light after he created a fake Instagram with his ex’s photos. Plus Bill gives us a look at who he’ll have on for this weeks Connect to Chicago.

Listen to Bill Cameron on Connected to Chicago, Sunday nights at 7 pm.

PAWS pet of the week: Brownie!


Brownie is a sweet and gentle 12-year-old Shepherd mix.  This golden girl is hoping to find a home where she can kick back and relax in the company of her human friends whenever her heart desires.  She makes a wonderful cuddle buddy and loves snuggling and napping next to her favorite humans. Although cuddling may be her fave, she still has some pep in her step and loves going for long strolls through the neighborhood and playing fetch with tennis balls.  This gorgeous bundle of love can’t wait to spend her days basking in the sunshine and enjoying playtime in her forever home!

Brownie is searching for a quiet, adults-only home where she is the only canine as she loves having all eyes on her!  She loves being the center of everyone’s attention and hopes she can soak up as much affection as her humans can offer.  Brownie is also super talented and has mastered a few commands.  She hopes to prove that mature ladies can still learn new tricks and would love to learn even more in the future!

For more information on Brownie, who is currently spending time in a foster home, call 773-935-PAWS, email adoptions@pawschicago.org,  or visit www.pawschicago.org.


Illini 4000 participants nearing end of cross-country bike ride to fight cancer


Big John and Ramblin’ Ray are joined by Margaret Piazzi, a participant in the Illini 4000, where she talks with John and Ray about the 20 Illinois students who biked cross-country to raises funds for cancer.

The Illini 4000 is committed to supporting cancer causes both nationally and locally within the central Illinois community and have chosen a variety of organizations including the American Cancer Society, Camp Kesem, the Lance Armstrong Foundation, the Damon Runyon Cancer Research Foundation, the Ishan Gala Foundation, The Andrew McDonough B+ Foundation, TLC Camp, and University of Illinois Urbana Champaign researcher Dr. Brendan Harley, to help us achieve our mission.


Photo via the University of Illinois

Former Gov. Pat Quinn’s Quest to Get Mayoral Term Limits


Big John and Ramblin’ Ray are joined by Former Governor of Illinois, Pat Quinn, where they talk about mayoral term limits. 60% of Chicagoans have clear support for it and want it on the ballot where the mayor’s people are not allowing it.

If you’re interested in signing the petition head over to takechargechicago.org.



Pigeon-Feeding Woman Curses Out IL State Rep On Facebook Live

IRVING PARK — In a battle to keep the Irving Park Blue Line stop free of pigeon poop, State Rep. Jaime Andrade Jr. recorded himself asking two people to stop feeding the pigeons there.

But one woman, with a bag of rice in her hand, defiantly cursed at him and proceeded to feed the pigeons during the politician’s Facebook Live video.

“She literally threw the rice under the sign that says it’s a $500 fine to feed the pigeons,” Andrade told Block Club Chicago  Tuesday afternoon. “The frustrating part is, if people keep feeding the pigeons I will never be able to solve this situation.”

Since last Thursday, both Ald. John Arena (45th) and Andrade, a Democrat who represents the state’s 40th District, have posted images of city crews power-washing the CTA station.

The two men have been coordinating the cleanup of the station while trying to find a “a long-term solution” to “chronic pigeon issues” at the location, according to Arena’s office.

So running into two people going out in the middle of the night to feed the pigeons, after city crews had powerwashed the area, was very frustrating, he said.

Andrade went live on Facebook around 12:55 a.m. Tuesday to follow up with the crews scheduled to continue power-washing the Blue Line stop overnight.

The video begins with him getting into his car and heading to a Dunkin’ Donuts, before heading to the CTA train station. Once Andrade arrives at the Irving Park Blue Line station he becomes upset with the fresh pigeon droppings on the sidewalk.

“That was power-washed on Thursday. Oh man, I can’t believe it. Someone just fed the pigeons. Just fed them,” he said. Next, the video shows him looking around the area and then walking over to a dark SUV with a man and woman inside of it parked by station’s bus turnabout.

The woman responds by saying that the birds don’t need to be killed and aggressively yells profanities at Andrade as he continues to film her. In the video the SUV appears to have multiple bags of rice in its trunk, and the woman is seen carrying a bag of rice as well.

Confrontation begins at the 35-minute mark:


Check out the full story at blockclubchicago.org