Friday, November 19, 2004

The One about Morning Radio - Nov 19

C'mon. I can't be the only person that hates all the endless chatter on morning radio, right? Because it's really starting to shake my faith in capitalism. A product that offensive to the consumer should have been kicked to the curb years ago.

Which doesn't explain The View, but still . . .

Just to clarify, I'm not talking about 'talk' radio. This is for two reasons: A) Because I avoid it. Having someone blather on and on about their opinion for hours doesn't appeal to me.

I have a wife for that, thank you.

And B) it's blessedly confined to the AM dial, which hasn't worked in our car since I crushed a Styrofoam cup, sending Sprite into the inner workings of the stereo. (and believe me, my wife went 'talk radio' on me for the rest of that day).

No, I'm talking about the daily, universal pairing of otherwise unemployable DJ's, each compelled to offer me the worst skits, the shallowest news headlines, and no music. No music.

That last part's where I draw the line. If I'm in my car at six in the morning, chances are I'm a wee bit frustrated. Perhaps a little jazz would help relieve my tension. Or, if I choose to vent, some metal or rap. What will not accomplish this is a sixty-year old man playing a phone prank, to be followed by a local version of Stupid Pet Tricks.

And it's true for every radio station, regardless of their format. Oh, there are variations. The tag team of aging hippies at the 'classic rock' station aren't as young and hip as those on 'urban music' scene. And depending on the demographic of the listener, the DJ's will discuss psoriasis, as opposed to say, the clap. But underneath, they're all the same.

I can see how this idea seemed logical in the boardroom. People wake up, they drive to work. What's important to them at that moment? They need to know the time, they want to catch up on the news, they want to know the weather. So how about we give them all this info for four straight hours?

If I may be so bold, here is my retort.

I am already awake, dressed, in the car, and on my way to work. I should know by that point if it's raining or not, and if some is forecast for the afternoon, whoopdeedo. What would you have me do, turn around and go home to grab my galoshes from the closet?

The time? My radio has a clock. So does my wrist, my phone, and every bleeping bank I pass.

The news? This concept, I admit, has value …except for the fact that it's mighty hard to condense a newspaper into the 4.3 seconds allotted for the news. Maybe that's a blessing though. Last week I heard a DJ stop reading a story about a Japanese woman to ask what a kimono was. This, from a man corporate America deemed intelligent enough to helm four hours of discussion a day.

Thank God he didn't stumble over any obscure words, like say . . .hamburger.

(sadly, when I told a friend that story he interrupted to ask me what a kimono was. This leads me to believe that I'm as incredibly bright as I am handsome. For the record, it's a decorative robe of Asian origin.)

I know it's a lost cause, ranking right up there with the 'pro-smoking for children' lobby. But somewhere, someone has to feel the same way.

Is it too much to ask to hear a good NKOTB song in the morning?

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