THE SENIOR MEN'S CLUB OF NEW CANAAN
Minutes of the Regular Meeting of December 12, 2003
President Ron Seger opened the meeting with 147 members present. Membership is 525 with 14 on the waiting list.
Announcements: Dick DePatie announced the deaths of former member Edward Stagg and present member Waldron Proctor. He also announced that Don Hunziker is in the hospital for an aneurysm and will have an operation on Monday. John Gillis gave us information on a seminar cruise aboard the Queen Mary 2 May 18 to May 28. The trip will feature six nights aboard ship and four nights in London.
Activities: Bridge, paddle and chess continue as usual. Skyblazers meet Monday at 9:00 at Lapham. Racquetball was silent and Harry Hitch said the investment seminars are over until March.
Couth: The January 15 trip to New York is now sans Frick museum, which has been replaced by wine with lunch at the Tavern on the Green. Check in is 7:15 a.m. February 15 is the trip to the New Haven museums and lunch at Mory's. A March 16 trip is now planned for the Museum of Natural History including the planetarium.
Resident Humorist: Clark Robinson told a story about how an Italian and French couple think that they make the most passionate love, but a Jewish couple outdoes them both with the aid of some chicken fat.
Speaker: Vice President, Pete Stair, introduced fellow New Canaanite Chase Carey, incoming president of Hughes Electronics, who spoke about "Television in the 21st Century." He is currently a senior executive with News Corporation, the parent company of Fox. Mr. Carey gave many examples of the vast changes that have taken place since 1980. At that time there were no satellites, 50% of all the prime time news was on CBS, ABC, and NBC, and the NFL signed a complete game television contract for $200 million. Today, cable stations own the news business, satellites have greatly expanded, and the latest NFL contract with Fox alone is $550 million. The money involved in the television business has become enormous. Jerry Seinfeld made $100,000 per show, one episode of E.R. costs $13 million, and advertising spent on pro football is $2.5 billion. Other changes in television are technical. Broadband high-speed access has grown to 20 million households today and will reach 52 million by 2007. PVR (personal video recorder) will grow from 4 million today to 33 million by 2007. Finally, HDTV (high definition television) is taking off and should reach 40 million households by 2007. Mr. Carey finished with a few predictions as follows. There will be more consolidation in the future, broadband pricing will go down, AOL will sell out to Viacom, local phone companies will have trouble competing with cable companies, and if the democrats are elected, there will more regulation in the whole media business. He finally predicted that George Steinbrenner's payroll would soon exceed $300 million. As you can see, there's a lot of money involved in the media business, and I leave it up to your imagination as to who will pay for it.
Eric Musa, Secretary