What fresh hell is this?

Caretaker’s note: Like I said, not much to see here but like Peter Quill said, ‘If you had a black light, the place would look like a Jackson Pollock painting.” There used to be some parties here back in the day. I remember one time when…nah, we better not get into all that.


“…the same rowdy crowd that was here last night is back again…” — “Sharon” by David Bromberg

The Same Rowdy Crowd is a bunch of folks who combine idiot idealism, a hairball or two of cynicism and an irresistible urge to shoot our mouths off about communications and other topics – good, bad and stupid.

We’ve been doing it for years in boardrooms, classrooms, newsrooms, bars and the op-ed pages; amazingly, each of us has made a living in communications for decades. Some of us have worked for the media, some for government, some for universities, some for companies large and small. We’ve worked for ourselves and others, but regardless of who signs our paychecks or how we put food on the table, we’re pretty much one or two standard deviations past normal.

We teach communications or counsel organizations on how to communicate effectively in calm seas and in storms. We’re all writers, and we’d like to think we can make some smart observations about how people and organizations say things. We take the subject very seriously, ourselves not so much at all. We don’t all agree on everything; part of the fun of doing this, in fact, comes from the back-and-forth. And, as you’ll soon see, we wander into other areas of society, politics, culture, technology and more as the mood hits us.

We want to make a difference, spark clear communication, have some fun and raise some hell. Since starting this gig, we’ve been lucky to attract a smart, opinionated group of visitors who do – and don’t – think like us, believe as we do or see the world in our colors. That’s most of the fun.

Thanks for giving us a read. See what you think, yap back at us if you’re so inclined. We’re eager to mix it up.

Jon Austin
Bruce Benidt
Tony Carideo
Mike Keliher
Brian Lambert
Joe Loveland
Ellen Mrja
William Souder

8 thoughts on “What fresh hell is this?

  1. Scott Papillon says:

    Good luck, guys, from Santa Rosa, California. It’s supposed to be 72 degrees here this weekend, so that’s explanation enough about why I left Medtronic in Minneapolis.

    Here’s another topic for discussion: I believe that William Shatner and Tyne Daly are really the same person. Seriously, take a look at their photos…

    Scott Papillon

  2. Curtis Smith says:

    Here’s a topic for you democratically inclined bloggers.

    Can a republican-leaning professional come “out of the closet” and still survive in the PR industry?

    I know of several practitioners who keep their elephant tendencies a secret in fear of a swift donkey kick. I find this very interesting.

    It’s great to see such a highly experienced group of professionals in one place. I’m sure I will learn a lot.

  3. Curtis, Scott Meyer was a card-carrying Republican and did pretty well — Mona Meyer McGrath & Gavin, then global CEO for Shandwick Worldwide. Scott slipped his leash and voted for Jesse Ventura (as did I) so lord knows what he calls himself today.

    But if political persuasion makes a person keep his or her head down, then those of us around him or her are blasting away openness with self-righteous certitude — and that’s the death of learning and a horrible place for a communicator to be.

    And this site is about shooting mouths off on what people care about and making room for all views. Much more fun that way.

  4. Curtis Smith says:


    Great point about Scott.

    As always, you are the quintessential teacher. I hope you’re still over at St. Thomas shaping young and old minds alike.

    The truly interesting aspect of this phenomenon is the rare occurrence when the boisterous democrat pushes the closet republican to the edge – forcing him/her to defend a point-of-view.

    Agreed. There’s nothing better than watching the sparks fly. 🙂

    Best wishes,

  5. I am looking forward to reading your blog. You guys sound pretty interesting and accomplished. Hopefully, I will learn a thing or two. Hope you don’t mind a sassy dumb blond hanging around the schoolyard.

  6. Hal Davis says:

    I’m glad an instantly recognizable David Bromberg line graces the title of this here blog. It is a proud and lonely thing to be a Bromberg fan outside of New York. I’m glad there’s another.

    I’m sure I’ll be dropping in. I haven’t yet left salaried journalism, so my time here may be limited.

    Long may she wave.

    Oh: and Tyne Daly (in her younger days) more closely resembled Zohra Lampert, a much subtler actress.

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