April Fools! El Rushbo, the Prankster

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TODD: Now, we’re gonna wind back into history with Rush here, but I want you to listen for an economic point, because I’m gonna make one, and it came to me as I listened to this. Now, this was back when Rush worked at WIXZ in McKeesport, Pennsylvania. He was a D.J. We’re not sure. This may have been in the Jeff Christie days. (laughing) You remember that. Now, that said, even when the Maha was making point he made a point about government spending.

RUSH: I have a little joke I’m gonna play on the light company. (dial tone) We’ll call them up on the phone right now and give them a little grief. (ringing) Phone’s ringing. Let’s hear.

MAN: Hello.

RUSH: Is this Duquesne Light customer service?

MAN: Yes, this is.

RUSH: Hi there. How are you?

MAN: Oh, just fine.

RUSH: Well, good. Listen. I have a question for you, and I hope you can answer it.

MAN: Oh, we’ll try our best.

RUSH: Well, I just moved here from Florida.

MAN: Mmm-hmm.

RUSH: And I have a thing for palm trees, and as you probably know, there aren’t any around here.

MAN: Not outside, anyway.

RUSH: Well, I got a big backyard, and I wanted to start a palm tree orchard, and the only way to do this is with heat lamps. And I wanted to put about 15,000 or 20,000 of them out there, and I wanted to know if you could quote me a price on how much this is gonna cost me per month.

MAN: Fifteen or 20,000 heat lamps?

RUSH: Yeah.

MAN: You know how many watts each lamp is?

RUSH: Be about 600 watts per lamp.

MAN: You want 15,000 lamps for this palm tree orchard?

RUSH: Around 15,000.

MAN: Okay. You gonna run how many hours a day?

RUSH: Twenty.

MAN: Twenty hours a day, 600 watts apiece.

RUSH: Yeah.

MAN: Wait a second?

RUSH: Yeah.

MAN: On the average, now, this will run you 3,640-odd dollars a day.

RUSH: Oh-ho-ho. You kidding.

MAN: Not kidding.

RUSH: I was thinking like 30 bucks a month, maybe.

MAN: No way. (laughs) You got over, what, nine million watts there.

RUSH: Three thousand bucks a day?

MAN: Right. You got 15,000 lightbulbs.

RUSH: Yeah, well, I could move to Florida cheaper than that.

MAN: Sure. Fifteen thousand lightbulbs at 600 watts apiece comes out to about 9,120,000 watts. I mean, I don’t think we even have a rate to accommodate that.

RUSH: $3,000 a day.

MAN: $3,648.

RUSH: Well, thanks, but I’ll move back to Florida if I want palm trees. But thank you for your time and trouble.

MAN: You’re welcome.

RUSH: Okay. Bye-bye.

TODD: (laughing) That’s so… A, if he’d been growing pot, as someone from EIB said, he’d get a federal subsidy for that. B, the economic point. Government would say, “Okay!” Case in point. Joe Biden’s dementia is offering to spend $500,000 of your money to improve the woke masks that don’t work, can’t work. The mechanical engineering, chemical engineering, they can’t. Case in point: They want to spend this money.

Well, Justin Hart at Rational Ground looked at this: “Two and a half months after Germany mandated medical grade masks for their improved efficacy, the 7-day average of new cases is now higher than it was before the mandate.” And just to put an exclamation point on this, there’s an Israeli startup who’s already invented a woke mask that they say tops it all. I mean, you can’t breathe in it, but you’re not gonna get the covid. You can’t breathe… Well, you might get it but you won’t have it long.

BREAK TRANSCRIPT

TODD: Rush was remembering a prank that he played back in the day, and he played really silly phone pranks that were such fun. This is audio sound bite number 10.

RUSH: We played silly phone tricks, my brother and I and our friends, it was our pastime, and every time we tried one on Irene Wright, we never succeeded. Irene Wright, former drama teacher, speech teacher, we never was able to pull a prank on her. She was wise to us. But as I say, she never gave us up. She never warned anybody that we were on the prank path. She left the targets wide open for us to hit. She always knew it was us. But she never told anybody else in town that we were on the march. She never ratted us out. So we were able to pull off our pranks, despite her knowing.

TODD: (laughing) I love the fact that Rush remembers sort of someone who has complicit in the crime of the phone pranks. I think a lot of us have done those.

BREAK TRANSCRIPT

TODD: Rush was remembering a prank that he played back in the day, and he played really silly phone pranks that were such fun. This is audio sound bite number 10.

RUSH: We played silly phone tricks, my brother and I and our friends, it was our pastime, and every time we tried one on Irene Wright, we never succeeded. Irene Wright, former drama teacher, speech teacher, we never was able to pull a prank on her. She was wise to us. But as I say, she never gave us up. She never warned anybody that we were on the prank path. She left the targets wide open for us to hit. She always knew it was us. But she never told anybody else in town that we were on the march. She never ratted us out. So we were able to pull off our pranks, despite her knowing.

TODD: (laughing) I love the fact that Rush remembers sort of someone who was complicit in the crime of the phone pranks. I think a lot of us have done those.

BREAK TRANSCRIPT

TODD: Rush also was an accomplished prankster, and he took that skill on-air with a magic piece of technology that had yet to be invented.

RUSH: One of the most fun things I ever did was to pretend I had a picture phone. They were testing the picture phone, or they were going to in Pittsburgh. This is the seventies. And there was a Gimbels department store right across the street from the radio station, KQV. So I went over there and went to the lingerie department.

I scoped it all out and looked at the girl working there — what she was wearing, where the cash register was, where all the stuff in the lingerie department was — and made notes. I went back to the production room in the radio station and turned on the tape recorder and I called over there. (impression) “Hello, Gimbels. Can we help you?”

“Yes, I’d like to talk to the lingerie department.”

“Thank you, hold on just a second.”

She picks up, “Hi, this is Ms. Elfrink,” was her name.

I said, “Hi, I’m such-and-such from KQV. I’m helping the phone company test-market the new picture phone. I want to test it here, and I’ve actually got a need as well.”

“What’s that, sir?”

“Well, it’s my girlfriend’s birthday coming up in a couple days and I want to buy her a couple slips. And I have a new picture phone here. I don’t have time to come over there, but if you just hold the slips up to the phone, I’ll be able to see if that’s what I want and pack ’em up and send somebody over to pick them up.”

“Sir, there’s no such thing as a picture phone.”

I’d anticipated this. “Yes, you probably haven’t heard about it. The phone company’s very forward thinking. The carbon granules in the microphone of your phone, your hand-held set there, are a low resolution black and white camera. I can see you right now. You’re very blurry. I mean if you hold that phone away from you I’ll be able to tell you what you look like and what you’re wearing.”

“No, you can’t.”

“Yes, I can. Just hold the phone away from you, move it up and down, scan up and down and I’ll be able to tell you.”

“You can’t!”

“Ma’am, if you’ll just do it, I really don’t have time here to waste. You know, I’m on the air and I gotta get this done.”

“You’re on the air?”

“Yes, ma’am, I am.”

“Well, I’m gonna feel dumb doing this in front of…”

“Well, just duck down behind the cash register there to your left.”

(Gasp!)

So she ducks down. We had somebody over there watching this. She scans herself with the phone. I told her what she was wearing. She freaks. She literally can’t believe it.

So I said, “I want a couple 34Cs.” She went and got the slip. She scanned the slip and she packed ’em up.

TODD: Rush was inventing… He was inventing FaceTime back in the day. I wonder, did anyone check and see if Jobs owes the Limbaugh estate money? See, it’s no accident that the man illustrated absurdity by being absurd in political realms when he did it in that way.

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