When you drive to and from work for nearly two hours a day, you can only talk to yourself for so long before you start questioning your sanity. For those lucky people out there with iPod inputs, readily available CDs or commercial-free radio, congrats, but I don't have any of those. (PS I hate being poor.) I'm fairly sure it's illegal to wear headphones blasting in your ears while driving, and it would be an epic event to even try to locate my CDs since most of my stuff is still in storage and hour and a half away. And where they are? Yeah, I have no idea. I also don't make enough to afford satellite radio, so I'm at the mercy of the public radio gods.
Unfortunately, they suck, no matter what the "Radio is awesome!" ads I hear 47 times a day say. I'll occasionally tune in to Free Beer and Hot Wings on 102.9 The Buzz in the mornnig, mainly for the "What Hot Wings Thinks" segment (he basically chooses a topic and goes on a tirade), although NPR is usually my default station, so I can stay somewhat on top of things. My main problem is with the morning/afternoon/evening shows and their little DJs. They are all horrible. It's like all the rejected (and maybe even some accepted) comedians from SNL write all the material, and since there aren't any faces associated with the broadcast, they rest easy in their one-bedroom apartments covered in Cheetos (Cheetohs? Cheetoz? I have not a clue as to the spelling.) and beer cans.
Nothing of interest was on NPR this morning because they were going on about how Ted Kennedy died, so I was forced to go to the pop channels. Free Beer and Hot Wings just wasn't appealing, so I ended up having to listen to "Gender Wars" on 107.5 The River. First of all, the contestants were dumb. Or they lived under a rock, I'm not quite sure. The guy, who I'm assuming was around my age or younger, won by default and he was awarded with ... drumroll please ... Thomas the Train tickets.
I wonder if anyone has ever declined a prize on one of those radio game shows. If not, this was probably the first one.
And then the sketches. Oh, the sketches. Following that root canal of a game, they documented a video that proved Michael Jackson faked his own death. How they managed to stretch this over five minutes should have been a feat in and of itself - "Everything on the internet is true because they check everythig. So Michael Jackson is still alive, living with Elvis and all the other famous people who died when they were at the top of their popularity. You have to believe it because it's on the internet, and everything on the internet is true because they ....." - but I guess what's sad is that Woody, Jim and the other people in the studio were acting like they thought it was just hilarious. Maybe they were just working on an Oscar nomination. Sure. We'll go with that.
Luckily, I arrived at work before they started on something else, but it got me wondering about the slow decay of radio quality. It's like newspapers and reality TV; it just keeps getting worse. I wouldn't be surprised if they brought on Andrew Clay (you know, the only comedian that has been banned by MTV, although that's not really so much of a punishment nowadays) to boost some ratings. Blech, no, thank you.
I've decided that I'm going to ride in silence from now on. Or maybe just break the law and listen to my iPod. What can I say? I like to live dangerously.