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Sue Spitulnik

Flash Fiction and personal thoughts

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WBEE

True Radio Memory

A phone call on a weeknight from my UPS driver son wasn’t a common thing. I asked, “What’s up?”

“Every place I made a delivery today the ladies were crying about some DJ dying. Who was he and were you crying too?”

“On my God, yes. Bill Coffey from WBEE dropped dead yesterday after the show. Terry and Billy told us this morning. We all cried together.”

“Did you ever meet this guy?”

“No, but I knew him well. Those DJ’s are my friends.”

“They don’t know you.”

“But I feel like I know them.”

“I don’t get it.”

Written in response to Charlie Mills September 10, 2020, prompt from Carrot Ranch Literary: In 99 words (no more, no less), write a story that includes something heard on the radio. It can be from any station or era. What is heard? A song, announcement, ad? Think of how radion connects people and places. Go where the prompt leads!

National Radio Day

It was in the 1920s when the first broadcast stations began airing programs.  These first programs were those of news and world events.

  •  Radio ownership grew from two out of five homes in 1931 to four out of five homes in 1938.
  • According to FCC statistics, at the end of 2012, there were more than 15,000 licensed broadcast radio stations in the U.S.

WBEE is one of the local radio stations where I live.  Their format is new-country which means they play the music of the young country music artists.  The sound gets more “rocky” every year, but then I get older every year so maybe that’s why I hear it that way.

There are six major radio personalities that work throughout the day.  Three of those I know well enough to walk up to in a crowd and talk personal news with.  I consider that a privilege and honor. You see, from listening to them for years, I know them better than my own sisters because of the personal information they share over the air waves.  For instance, I can tell you Terry’s doctor’s name; where Steve’s wife works and what kind of beer he drinks;  where Newman grew up and what store he stops at for milk.  It also helps that I have donated a quilt to a local golf tournament every year for the last thirteen years and “my DJs” are usually in attendance at the awards dinner because WBEE is one of the sponsors.

When I was working I heard things on the radio in the early morning that became topics of discussion at work.  Some of my co-workers seemed very out of the loop because they often didn’t know about happenings in the local area especially road closures and current events.  Mind you, once in a while the conversation is of no real importance, like this morning they talked about whether an individual should wear anything to bed or not.  They decided it was a personal preference.  I’m not telling!

We have all seen pictures of people gathered around a radio in the past, to hear war news or listen to a baseball game.  Now we turn on the TV and switch channels until we find the information we want any time of day or night.  Sometimes I wish a lot of the news was still harder to get; maybe there wouldn’t be so much angst about what is going on in another country.

I’d be lost without my radio friends to spend the day with.  They share their thoughts, foibles and dreams, along with country music, traffic reports, and one minute news blurbs.   And let’s not forget the commercials;  most I can tune out, but not all.  I clean house, sew, cook, relax and never feel like I am home alone.  I almost forgot, the cat is here too, on my lap, under foot, or pushing me out of my chair so he can sleep in it.  Like I said, never alone.  Thank you WBEE.

 

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