The new season: Fox and NBC are ready

By the end of today's presentation for advertisers, Fox had filled the stage with a golden-robed choir and the cast of "Glee."

Heroes, spies and an Indian chief

I'm just back from Chicago, where life is good. That is to say, where the Cubs beat the Cardinals in two straight come-from-behind wins. Sometimes -- even amid foul weather and more-foul economics -- it's easy to define "good."

I'll tell you more about Chicago soon. First, however, I had a chance to do some advance TV viewing; some notes:

1) It's hard to believe, but tonight (Monday, April 20) already brings the season's second-to-last new episodes of "Chuck" and "Heroes," at 8 and 9 p.m.on NBC.

Monday (Feb. 2) TV: Too much, too good

We all know that Feb. 2 repeats itself over and over. That's what happened to Bill Murray in the "Groundhog Day" movie; the repeating was, we were told, a bad thing.

This week, however, I think it would be kind of good. Monday has way too many strong shows for one night; it would be a good day to repeat -- or at least to put our VCR's or TIVO's into hyperdrive.

Passenger trains still work (really)

I probably should have suspected this, but now I know for sure: This whole passenger-train thing really does work.

Movies and TV shows -- my main reference points in life -- always hint that trains work. They show passengers riding effortlessly; along the way, people find romance, sex and mysteries, plus a meanĀ  guy who's intent on killing James Bond.

Still, I keep forgetting to try. My one previous train trip (from Minnesota to Michigan) had included fun and Scrabble; then I went back to my usual car life.