Vin Scully, seen here in 2012, has called Dodger games for more than 60 years.… (Los Angeles Times )
Readers are talking a lot about a man who talks for a living: Vin Scully. Times data editor Doug Smith's Op-Ed article Tuesday musing on "the voice of L.A." closed with a question: "As far as I'm concerned, the voice of L.A. should be heard every day in some public place. So tell me, where would you want to hear Vin Scully?"
More than 60 suggestions were sent to firstname.lastname@example.org and to Smith directly. Perhaps as a reflection of mobile technology's imbededness in our lives, many of the suggestions relate to cellphones. Others said the comforting familiarity of Scully's speech would soften phrases normally used to deliver bad news (think a police car's loudspeaker telling you to pull over). Smith offered his own idea: "having Scully record that voice at LAX that tells you the white zone is only for unloading."
Here are many of the reader suggestions we received, organized loosely into several categories. Below those is a poll asking readers to pick the best idea from a list of five determined by Smith and yours truly (a lifelong Dodgers fan to whom Scully's voice is as familiar as any family member's).
Phones (and the voices on them):
"I would love to replace the voice of Siri on my iPhone with Vin Scully’s. That way, I could ask him questions all day long to my heart's content -- and he would answer. How great would that be?
"I would like his voice on my cellphone when a call is coming in -- something like: 'Good evening and welcome to your cellphone. It's another beautiful day in Los Angeles or wherever you might be. I want to let you know that you have a call coming in. You should answer your phone soon because this call is going, going, gone!'"
"Scully's could be the voice that kindly asks us to turn off our cellphones at the movies. Everyone would obey, I have no doubt."
"I do not honestly know if one can still call a telephone number for the correct time of day, but if so, how wonderful would it be to hear Vin's voice on the other end of the line? His level of esteem would lead most fans to believe it was 10:01 p.m. even if it were 6 a.m."
"I already have it as my ring tone on my cellphone: 'It's time for Dodger baseball.'"
"How about a Vin Scully voicemail recording for all of our cellphones?"
"I think a natural locale would be Union Station in downtown Los Angeles, announcing the arrivals and departures of the ilk of transports that were prevalent in the early days of baseball: ' Train No. 7, nonstop to San Francisco and the dreaded Giants, now boarding on Track 13. All aboard!' "
"I would love to hear him narrating a tour of downtown L.A. on a doubledecker bus. The tour would start at Dodger Stadium (of course) and wind its way through Chinatown and past the Music Center and other famous landmarks. Imagine the voice of Vin Scully describing Disney Hall. You'd have to have a lottery for the tickets."
"I'd love to hear Scully's voice on the Metro system. If you haven't ridden the bus routes, light-rail lines or the subway, the announcements can be snore-inducing."
"On the subway: 'The doors are closing,' or, 'This is the train to North Hollywood; get off and go downstairs for the train to Wilshire and Western.' "
"How about a recoding that says, 'Welcome to Los Angeles,' and, 'Another beautiful day in Los Angeles,' as planes arrive into LAX?"
"Given that GPS systems for our cars have become commonplace, I suggest Vin Scully-voice updated systems so we can be reassured that all is not lost -- even if when are."
"If I could hear Vin guide me to my destination on my car's GPS, it would make driving in L.A. so much less stressful. It might even put a serious dent in road rage."
"Where better than as a welcoming message at LAX? His message would be a perfect 'welcome home' to our residents and a wonderful greeting for visitors. One thing I know for sure: We could all use a little more Vin Scully."
"I've always wanted an alarm clock (or to be more current, perhaps a phone app) that uses Vin's voice to alert me: 'And a very pleasant good morning to you wherever you may be.' "
"On each and every clock radio in Los Angeles, at the preset alarm time each morning, these words: 'In a year that has been so improbable, the impossible has happened, so wake up, give thanks and in the words of my hero, coach John Wooden, make today your masterpiece.' "
"If I could hear Vin Scully's voice somewhere other than the booth, it would be my alarm in the famous voice saying, 'It's the top of the morning and next up is you.' "
Law enforcement and public safety:
"Since Scully's voice is calming, reassuring and very recognizable, I believe it should be used by police departments as a recording to get suspects to lay down their weapons and come out peacefully. Just imagine how many lives his voice would save, how many otherwise abused families would be spared, or how many riots would be averted."