Thursday, June 09, 2011


I have a CBS story for the site.

It must have been in 1967 or 1968. I was working in the Videotape Library. Frank Somers was the boss and Bob Ruggerio was the manager.
We were piling up small boxes of commercials (2 inch VT) all over the floor in the library. There was no more room for anything.
I spoke to Frank and he told me to work on clearing things out. Being a 23 year old kid and not really thinking things out I decided to throw out any tape that had not aired in the past 3 months. I opened each box and took out all the playback sheets to determine the last time a spot had aired.
I had been doing this for a number of weeks and was very proud of myself. One rainy Sunday I got a call from one of my supervisors (it may have been Vinnie Verrico).
He told me that a certain Geritol spot could not be found. In those days I had a great memory and recalled the commercial code and realized I had tossed it into a dumpster some time back.
The spot was scheduled to air live on Sullivan that night. I went into panic mode for a moment and then realized that this was a piggyback spot.
30 seconds was on film and 30 seconds was on tape. I also remembered it was produced at Reeves.
I also remembered that one of our former librarians (Dick Cooper) was working there. I got his number, called him and begged him to help me.
I drove to Harlem, picked him up and went down to Reeves on 44th St. on the east side.
His boss ( Dick Smith) also a former CBS guy gave him permission to let me have the master film and tape of the commercial.
We went back to CBS and I begged someone to transfer the film to tape through CC.
Then I begged someone to find an editec pair of 2" Hiband machines and begged once more for someone to edit the spots together.
Somehow it got done and we delivered the spot to to the playback technician with 1/2 hour to go before the live show. Needless to say I NEVER threw out another spot.

Let's hear some more stories.