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Let's Make a Deal

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Back to McDonald: One source who still wants to remain anonymous (despite being named in the Post) received $500 from McDonald last week, or just over 5 percent of the amount owed. Payback is a bitch.

The dinner party: How close did Steve Kelley come last week to quitting his job at Colorado Morning News, KOA's morning-drive staple? That depends on whom you ask. Kelley didn't return calls from Westword, nor did April Zesbaugh, his CMN co-host, but KOA program director Don Martin allows that tensions were running high. As he puts it, "Steve Kelley had a bad day."

The brouhaha began after CMN scored big in the latest ratings book: Martin says the program was number one among listeners ages twelve and above, and a shade off the top spot in the key 25-54 demographic. To celebrate, plans were made to treat the show's staff to a May 12 dinner at swanky Brook's Steak House -- but somewhere along the line, word got out that spouses and significant others could not attend. (Although several insiders say guests were invited, then uninvited, Martin denies it.) Upset, Kelley stormed into Martin's office on May 10 and, after the two exchanged heated words, stormed out again. When Kelley played hooky from the next day's broadcast, rumors circulated that he'd resigned -- but he was back behind the microphone on May 14.

What happened? The aforementioned insiders say feathers were smoothed after a meeting between KOA honchos and Kelley's lawyers, but Martin won't go there. The way he tells it, "Steve was upset about some things and walked out. But after that, he was allowed to say his piece, I was allowed to say mine, and cooler heads prevailed -- and his butt's back on the radio again."

Oh, yeah: Kelley dined at Brook's on May 12. Sans one wife.

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Michael Roberts has written for Westword since October 1990, serving stints as music editor and media columnist. He currently covers everything from breaking news and politics to sports and stories that defy categorization.
Contact: Michael Roberts

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