"Omaha. Somewhere in Middle America." What kind of talent would we find in the audition city that brought us David Cook? (photo courtesy of American Idol)

Omaha!

Omaha!

Omaha!

Oops, forgot we were talking Idol here and not the Super Bowl. You know, Peyton Manning and all that nonsense he verbalizes at the line of scrimmage before actually doing something. But come to think about it that’s exactly what American Idol does – it says a lot of nonsensical things before it actually does something.

And mercifully that whole lot of nonsense ended in Omaha, Nebraska, Thursday night with the selection of 21 more candidates to head west and join the other 191 who received Golden Tickets the last couple of weeks.

So, now comes the real nonsense. While all 212 of these lucky souls around the country were told they were headed to Hollywood (they should have said, “Here’s your ticket to come close to Hollywood”) that wasn’t the case and at the end of Thursday’s show we received a glimpse of what is really on the way – an airport hanger.

And that is where the tryouts will continue as several more alleged Idols will be sliced, handed a boarding ticket and never even get a chance to see the Hollywood sign much less the Nokia Theatre. They won’t even be told they are singing until they attempt to do just that on the fly.

Seems quite unfair to me. What musician doesn’t rehearse, do sound checks, etc. before a performance. What exactly is this step in the competition proving?

It is blatantly unfair.

But at least the auditions are over. The chamber can be placed in mothballs for another season, all the guitars can be sent out for tuning and many of those lousy approvals will presumably be nixed in the hanger.

Overall the audition shows were well-done albeit predictable. The two-hour shows were ridiculously long but there were far fewer “gimmick” contestants and that was a good thing. But there were far too many guitar-playing contestants and that was a bad thing.

Now we move on. It’s just too bad we never got to hear a winning contestant come out of the audition room screaming, “I’m goin’ to the Burbank Airport hanger!”

What? What? What?