WDET’s Annual Festivus Airing of Grievances for 2022

We had a lot of problems with 2022, and now you’re gonna hear about it.

Stephen Henderson smiles with WDET's Festivus Pole in the studio

Stephen Henderson smiles with WDET's Festivus Pole in the studio in 2016.

There has to be a better way! That’s why each year on Detroit Today, we gain inspiration from Frank Costanza and celebrate Festivus (for the rest of us). Celebrated on Dec. 23 and created by Seinfeld as an alternative to Christmas, the holiday features the annual “Airing of Grievances.” Host Stephen Henderson and some friends of Detroit Today look back on the major frustrations, little victories and petty inconveniences of the past year.

“Please quit coming up to me and telling me I look like Jack Black. I’m already very aware of it.” —Ryan Patrick Hooper, host of CultureShift

Listen: Detroit Today’s 2022 Festivus Airing of Grievances.



Bill Nowling is executive director of strategic communication at DP+. Some of his 2022 grievances include:

  • People complaining about Twitter on Twitter. “If you really want to stick it to the man [Elon Musk], then go away.”

  • Republicans. “I consider myself as a former Republican, and I don’t know if it’s because I’m trying to cleanse my soul for the hereafter, or I’ve just had it intellectually with people who need to line their caps with some aluminum foil.”

  • Public elections for state university boards. “I think we need to do away with that, and put that authority back under the governor and let the governor appoint the trustees to run these big public institutions.”

Candice Fortman is the executive director of Outlier Media. Some of her 2022 grievances include:

  • Detroiters living in delusion about Lafayette Coney Island. “I think the amount of folks that have claimed that they were never going to eat there again, and that they never understood what happened in those hallowed walls at 3 a.m., was so concerning to me.”

  • Student loans. “That [the] discourse around student loans has the same energy as my dating life, is very concerning for me.”

  • Neglect and harassment of Black women. “This year, we have seen a tremendous amount of neglect, harassment and just a general lack of care for Black women.”

Ryan Patrick Hooper is the host of CultureShift on WDET. Some of his 2022 grievances include:

  • Treatment of service industry workers. “I think we have to step up. If you have someone in your life that is disrespectful to servers or bartenders, you need to cut them off.”

  • Being told he looks like a “thrift store Jack Black.” “We all know I am clearly an upscale resale Jack Black,” says Hooper. “Please quit coming up to me and telling me I look like Jack Black. I’m already very aware of it.”

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  • Detroit Today
    Dynamic and diverse voices. News, politics, community and the issues that define our region. Hosted by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Stephen Henderson, Detroit Today brings you fresh and perceptive views weekdays at 9 am and 7 pm.