I just read Howard Stern: King of All Media, a 1996 biography written by Paul D. Colford, a former radio columnist for Newsday. Although Howard was consistently accessible during the author's eight years at Newsday, he would not cooperate with the making of this book, and instructed Ben Stern, Mel Karmazin, and a handful of others to remain silent as well. But plenty of Howard's old colleagues did participate, and their interviews along with the author's thorough and extensive research are the foundation of this respectful and sometimes revealing biography. Here are some highlights (PART 1 of 2). ON REVISING ROOSEVELT "Howard exercises comedic license about Roosevelt, describing a more menacing level of decline in his immediate neighborhood than was supported by the facts." In a 1983 interview with Newsday, Howard said, "It was a very tough time. Blacks were really finding their own identity, their own music -- I was into the Beatles, I had fights -- but it wasn't so much with the black kids as with lower-class white kids. ... Yet it was definitely a good experience." "In the 1990s, he embellished his descriptions of Roosevelt, no doubt for theatrical effect, so that his nastier recollections were studded with details of black-on-white menace and a weakling's fears. At times he claimed to have been the only white kid in a black neighborhood -- an exaggeration that his own mother scoffed at -- and he belabored memories of his early teen years, declaring that he had been repeatedly intimidated and assaulted in junior high school by tough black students. These far more dramatic tales replaced his 1983 claim that most of his fights had been with 'lower-class white kids.'" "Black families who moved into the Conlon Road [Howard's street] area were further confused [by the white flight of some of Howard's neighbors] because they themselves -- an accountant, a policeman, a doctor, a teacher -- were as middle class as, or perhaps even more prosperous than, the white who were selling and fleeing. Although the immediate neighborhood's racial makeup changed dramatically, it remained a well-kept and relatively tranquil enclave amid deterioration. It did not become a slum, as the sellers of the 1960s feared." ON HOWARD STERN, THE HIGH SCHOOL YEARS In 1969, Howard's family moved to Rockville Center. His new neighborhood was rated a high-income area by Cole's Directory, a published sales reference that based its annual assessments on U.S. Census data. "It's the belief of some students who went to South Side with Howard that he has exaggerated for radio purposes the slights and follies that he claimed to have experienced in high school. A fellow graduate says, 'Those of us who remember Howard, we scratch our heads at some of his stories.' Only the few close friends that Howard made during his three years at South Side seemed to remember him at all." About his new high school, Howard later told an interviewer, "I went to a school with all the blond hair and blue eyes, and I was very freaked out." "Howard and his friends recognized that Jewish girls would date non-Jewish boys, but Jewish boys did not draw much attention from non-Jewish girls." Only fourteen blacks were pictures in the yearbook among more than three hundred students in Howard's class. On at least one occasion, Howard was observed showering in his underwear after gym class. Howard's nickname was Gunkard or the Big Gunk "We called him 'Gunkard,' or 'the Big Gunk,' because he was so big and gunky. He didn't like the name." ON THE COLLEGE YEARS "You have to understand how ugly Howard was," says classmate Kevin Goldman. "Take away that long, flowing hair that he now has and give him real scraggly hair and a geeky mustache. He was really unattractive." Ellen Fuchman, a crush of Howard's, says about his hair at the time, "It wasn't just long, it was the thinnest, most unruly long hair you ever saw. He sometimes stuffed his locks into a hairnet before going to bed at night." The 20-year-old camp counselor Howard "had a ritual of 'phallicizing,'" according to camper Kary D. Preston. "He'd pick out things that looked like a penis, such as a cucumber or even a jet airplane. He'd never really grown up, if you asked me." HOWARD'S EARLY DAYS IN RADIO Howard was not a rocker. As program director at WRNW, he steered the station toward softer rock. The hard sounds of the Who and the Rolling Stones were all but eliminated by Howard, who pushed Seals and Croft, Carole King and other singer-songwriters. Howard himself has said that he did not care about the music. "Long accustomed to bending his six-foot-five height through doorways, a giant among smaller people, he took advantage of WRNW's cramped quarters by reaching out and pinching other men's nipples when they had to squeeze past him in tight spaces." HARTFORD Once he moved to WCCC, He was always on the phone to the local TV stations and the newspaper reporters to apprise the media of his antics. "He was the world's best self-promoter." DETROIT Howard was a fake rocker. Speaking to WXYZ-TV six months into his stay, he sounded exuberant about the rock scene. "On any given weekend you don't have one or two major acts, sometimes you have three major acts in an area, plus you have the local clubs that are supporting bands that are terrific. There's so much music, so much excitement, I can't handle it. After milk and cookies, I should be in bed at night, but I'm out, you know, cruising the clubs and finding out what's going on." But Howard tended to limit his cruising to those events he was obligated to attend on behalf of WWWW. "He looked like he fit in with the rock-and-roll crowd, but he didn't." When Howard left for DC-101, he had a party in the suburbs. "It was a sedate gathering mainly of the conservatively dressed people who were Howard's real friends in the area. Those rock-and-roll station mates who customarily arrived for a bash no earlier than 10:30 or 11 P.M. walked into a party that was breaking up. Entertainment was provided by a magician -- geez, how square, the rockers snickered." DC "Howard had the cover photo of his comedy album retouched so that the leather-suited 'Howeird,' his whip brandished over the head of a cowering old woman, did not look so thick in the butt and thighs." In negotiating his move to New York radio, the executive hiring Howard made it clear that NBC was interested in Howard alone. "No insult intended, but I don't know who Fred Norris is," he told the Post. "We have had no discussion at NBC about the potential value of Robin Quivers."