March 10, 2011 – Remembering John Alexander McCormack with Joke off Monday

If you are friends of mine on The Book of Face you will notice that during the Lenten Season each day I post a joke of the day. These jokes are kid approved and pretty clean so they can be said to pretty much any age. I agree that some of them are “groaners” but hey, it isn’t like you have to pay for this type of free entertainment. On Sundays I normally spice things up and throw out a more adult joke and try to find a good Catholic joke if I can. God Bless the internet and some of my friends (SD, MM, MG, and KM) because I don’t have to look far to find my Monday – Saturday jokes.

Today being Thursday, March 10 it marks the five year anniversary of the death of John “Bad Dog” McCormack. Bad Dog was a radio personality in Memphis and one of the greatest guys to call Memphis home. We lost John to cancer.  I find solace knowing that he is up there in heaven looking down on us and laughing with that unmistakable laugh that we all could identify him by. I knew John from Alex’s Tavern that and he was always knucking it up with his best friend Rocky Kasaftes, the owner. Ironically it was when he was diagnosed with cancer that I found that I really appreciated and respected him even more. John was the first person who ‘dialogued’ about having cancer and  he was not going to let this disease knock him down one bit. He would do radio shows from his hospital bed, he devoted 100 percent into the fundraiser for the Ronald McDonald house and he did it with class and grace. Even the day prior to his death I recall him telling Tim Spencer that he was looking forward to getting out of the hospital and being back at the radio station.

Way back before the demise of main stream radio John was part of the morning group on Rock 103. Each and every Monday the ‘Wake Up Crew’ would have a segment called “Joke Off Monday” where people would call in with a joke. For some reason this day the jokes weren’t as good so John called a New York friend of his for whom I cannot recall his name for a joke. That gentleman went on LIVE AIR to tell this joke;

Boris Thomashefsky the great Hebrew actor was having lunch at Ratner’s when a young woman came up to his table. “Mr. Thomashefsky, I am a huge fan and am an inspiring actress. I am looking for a break to get into the theater.”
“My pigeon, I have a script that I am working on right now and if you would like you are more than happy to read it.” Thomashefsky informs the young woman.
“You would do that for me Mr. Thomashefsky, I would be honored” says the young girl.
“Waiter, my coat, my hat” barks Thomashefsky to the staff and they promptly leave the establishment.  Now naturally, as one could imagine, one thing leads to another and they end up in the bed.
“My Dove” states Thomashefsky, “you were amazing. Here is the script that I promised you, I want you to have it and you can read it.”
Naturally the young woman is dejected and exclaims “But Mr. Thomashefsky, you don’t understand, I am broke, I have no money, I need bread!”
Thomashefsky looks at the young woman and says to her “You want bread? You should have fucked a baker!”
Like I said before, this joke was said on LIVE AIR and this was well before the days of Howard Stern when F-Bombs were not looked too kindly at by the FCC. We will miss you John, you were one of a kind and we will never forget you.

Bad Dog“Even though I can not see it with my own eyes it makes me feel better knowing that John (McCormack) is on the radio and that Sonny (Wilson) is at the Tavern.” *Text Message I sent to Rocky Kasaftes when I learned that John was diagnosed with Cancer*


Rocky and I at the Bad Dog 5K Memorial Race. To Quote Rocky “I cussed him the entire 3.2 miles and could hear him laughing at me!”

I close with a letter that John had written prior and he asked that it be read after his death.

“I have gone to be with God and he is holding me tightly and I am surrounded by many of the Ronald McDonald’s House kids.  Do not say you have lost a friend… One is only lost when you don’t know where they are… you know where I am.  I thank each and every one of you for your support and prayers.  I love all of you and that will never go away.  When you are having a bad day… think of my laugh or a Twilight phone or the time we met.  None of us is guaranteed tomorrow, make every day great, be the spiritual leader of your family.  May peace be with you.”  Your friend, Bad Dog


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