Former KARE 11 anchor Mike Pomeranz said he's never used a tooth-whitening kit. Ever. Hard to believe, I know, because his teeth appeared unnaturally white on TV during his six years in the Twin Cities. He did leave the Twin Cities last week for a broadcasting job with the San Diego Padres with a box of Crest Whitestripes. At least I gave him that lovely parting gift when we got together to see if the man who aspired to be a major league pitcher before injuring his shoulder could still hit a few. He was thoroughly likable during our interview, which dealt with how his co-anchor, Julie Nelson, hides her "edge," while Mr. Charm, sports anchor Randy Shaver, doesn't bother to hide his. Oh, and Pomeranz even explained that there's a loose stone in meteorologist Belinda Jensen's wedding band.
Given KARE 11's proclivity for elevating sports guys to the main anchor desk, the early speculation has Shaver replacing Pomeranz, especially if the station is in a money-saving mode. However, Pomeranz had no insider info on Shaver's chances. And KARE's not interested in Pomeranz's opinions now that he's headed to California, where his teeth won't stand out at all.
Q So, you're not leaving because you are pregnant?
A I am leaving because I'm pregnant. (Inside joke that went out in Tuesday's column.)
Q Have you been promised the lead spot with the San Diego Padres when Dick Enberg leaves?
A No. This is a separate deal. Dick is the play-by-play guy. I'll do pre- and post-game.
Q Is it your hunch that the future of sports broadcasting is more stable than TV anchoring?
A I would say, if you use the word hunch, I like the fact that Dick Enberg is doing it at 77 years old. You can't watch sports on a larger screen [than the ballpark]. Everybody wants to see it on an 80-inch screen. News you can get on your phone, and it's trending in different directions.
Q Local broadcasting colleagues guess you are taking a big pay cut for this Padres job.
A No. I don't discuss my contract in the paper, but I'm going to tell you flatly, no.
Q What are the secret ingredients in your Fielder's Choice All Purpose BBQ Sauce?
A I'm giving that away? It's a family recipe. Every ingredient is disclosed; it's the amount that's the secret. But if there's a secret -- there might be a few -- the clove is different, and the cream sherry.
Q You know you're leaving before I was able to have you do an on-video taste test of five barbecue sauces to see if you could pick out yours.
A Oh, I could pick mine. I don't know that you would know mine because you haven't tried it! It's only been on the market a year.
Q If I had broken the seal, you'd have suspected that I tampered with it to trick your tastebuds, wouldn't you? But I bought it!
A I appreciate that, and so do all the charities I support with it [Minneapolis Heart Institute, Boys and Girls Club]. So thank you.
Q Are you still going to sell that barbecue sauce in Twins Country, even though you are moving to Padres Country?
A The plan is right now, yes. It's still on store shelves, Lunds and Byerly's, the Twins' Pro Shop. We'll just see how it goes.
Q What Twin Cities restaurant will you miss most?
A Oceanaire for me is hard to beat. I love the folks at Manny's, so I'm a seafood guy and steak guy, and I love Jake's for casual.
Q What's the name of your dentist?
A Plymouth Station Dental. I see Robert Sinko and Carl Fitzsimmons.
Q Did your dentists ever think you were overdoing it in with the teeth whiteners? Although your teeth do look more normal, not as blinding, in person.
A I told you. They read very white for some reason under the lights. When people have met me in person, I get that sometimes: They don't look as white in person.
Q Julie or Bel: Who is wilder at a party?
A Glad you ended that with "at a party." Oooh, I can't say I've ever seen either of them wild, but after six years of sitting next to both of them, I'd probably bet Belinda is. I extrapolate from what I've witnessed. It ain't Shaver, I'll tell you that!
Q Is meteorologist Sven Sundgaard ever shirtless around the office?
A I don't think Sven owns shirts at all. There's an FCC rule that we try to enforce where we have him in a shirt and maybe a coat. But he's a rebel, as you know. No, he's never shirtless at the office. Then again, he's not been on my shift for a while. What he does [on the "KARE11 Morning Show] I can't vouch for.
Q Do you prefer "Mr. Rogers Sven" (that's what I call Sven's new sweater-boy look) or "Island Sven" (the Christmas ornament of a buff merman a prankster mailed me)? You know, the joke around town is that some of Sven's sweaters seem tight enough to have been purchased at Baby Gap.
A I think they [the sweaters] look good on you, buddy. On you, they work. I like "Island Sven." Hard to beat that body.
Q I want to shoot video of your pecs, too, while I'm here.
A I'll tell you this: Under about 4 inches of body fat, I'm every bit as shredded as Sundgaard.
Q Have you noticed the double standard of it being OK for men who are on TV to have babies and not get married -- Mario Lopez, "Extra" host; Dan Abrams, ABC's legal expert -- but not women?
A I suppose there's some truth to that.
Q You have daughters, and much as I oppose babies outside of marriage, double standards must be fought, right?
A What is Chris Rock's line? You've got to keep them off the pole. That's what a dad does.
Q What have you told your daughters about guys?
A They're all evil. They're all bad. If you don't trust my opinion, ask your momma. She'll tell you. There's nothing good that comes from a boy. And you're allowed to date when you're 40. I think I'm being reasonable. The older I get, it scares the soul out of me. I've got a daughter going to middle school, the first year. I'm not doing well. I'm terrified.
Q&As are edited for space and clarity. C.J. is at 612.332.TIPS or firstname.lastname@example.org an on FOX 9 "Buzz" Thursday, Friday and Saturday questioning everything.