I would like to carry the three or four of you around with me everywhere I go in this life of radio.
But the truth is that I can hardly carry myself. This life of radio includes:
These are the things that I like to do. As a matter of fact, I think of it as my destiny to wake up at 4am and ride my bike down the Little Calumet River to the studios at Purdue to talk on the radio. That’s what I do five days a week.
And as far as these “JED in the Money” segments that I do on Facebook Live in the middle of the day, I enjoy these also. Every business tells a story, don’t it? Every business person is a drama unto him or herself. Listen for the breeze, write down its contents.
And as for the three or four of you and our pact to record for historical purposes what it is to live a life of local radio, you too are my legend. You may think that you’re just a passive reader of all that I present, but you are much more than that. Whereas I really am writing this for anyone in the future who would like to know what local radio was like… I also need you to share in the purpose.
I can do these things. The radio and blog are my destiny. The Money part… we’ll see. And if these were the only parts of My Radio Life that existed, I could carry you three or four around with me all day long. I could send you little Facebook Live videos, or text messages, or blog posts, or photos, or even little snippets of audio in which I get witty and purposeful.
But My Radio Life is not made of Radio, Money and Blog alone. There’s a lot more.
This is the point at which I whine. I tell you how busy my life is and how much work it is just to keep a couple of radio stations and a growing video company going. Do the three or four of you really want to hear that?
I want to tell it. I want to get it off of my chest that Alexis and I have owned the radio stations for 13 and a half years and here I am working as hard now as ever. I want to bitch about having to always be “On.” That’s how my childhood chump Billy Baker put it yesterday when we driving to finally play some golf:
“Doncha ever just get tired of being ‘On?’”
“Now that you bring it up - Yes I do. So quit talking.”
That’s as far as I’m gonna go towards whining this Sunday morning in late August. What I’m really trying to say is that if I go at this pace for too long, I will burn out. So I’m thinking about going to four days a week with the radio show. I’m figuring that cutting down the early wake-ups by 20% could go a long way towards getting me to do the show for 10 more years.
That’s right. We’re coming up on the 10-year anniversary of the show. I did radio long before ten years ago. Dave Kusiak and I hosted “Jimmy D and the Kooz” in the afternoons for a couple of years. And back in the 1980s, I hosted some sports shows and even filled in for the afternoon host, the late John Baranowski, a few times.
But it was almost 10 years ago that I kicked everyone out of the studio and started doing the morning show. Few listened, even less than today. It was a dark time, really, in that I had to sit down and start talking in the morning because we didn’t have money to pay someone else to do it.
It was also not too long after Alexis and I had split with our former partners. It cost a lot to buy them out. Life is long and life is dirty. But if you carry a washcloth, you might be able to stop by a roadside diner and take a Polish shower once in a while.
Everywhere you go
there are predators.
Your fear is not unwarranted.
Retire in Florida and you share
the swamp with alligators.
Go for a run outside Albuquerque –
Good luck with snakes and bears.
Los Angeles? There’s so many
people that you could walk
for years without getting
attacked by an animal.
But try the same in East LA.
People are predators, too,
You want to retire where there
aren’t any predators. But it
looks like the only way to do
that is to just never
leave your house.
The Buncich trial of 14 days really wore me down. I haven’t felt this exhausted in a long time. Part of it is that the trial came near the end of a summer in which I attended to:
It really is exhausting to shovel enough coal to keep this locomotive known as local radio chugging. I wish there were another way. But there isn’t.
I look at it as a tradeoff. I have to work like a dog so that I can talk on the radio every morning. The morning show means that much to me.
So why only do it four days a week?
I pause to answer this. The little cursor on my laptop blinks back and forth, waiting for an answer.
Why would I cut 20% off of something that I love?
The answer is in “love.” I really do believe that I stumbled into my mission in life, and that is to be there for people of the Calumet Region weekday mornings – and to be there for as long as possible. I know things can change in an instant, that bad things can happen and good things can happen that could take me away from the microphone in the morning.
But for now, I look ahead and I see the past ten years of doing the morning show on WJOB as where I am supposed to be. That’s a good feeling. And I want to continue it.
But I also fear that if I continue at the pace at which I’m living this life of local radio, I will burn out and make some bad decisions or just leave the show altogether to pursue other interests. So it is ironic that to continue doing the radio show that I may do it less, but that’s the answer I come up with on a Sunday morning.
Alexis and I are gonna do now what we always do on Sunday mornings, and that is to watch Chuck Todd on Meet the Press. What are the three or four of you gonna do? Thanks for listening to my psychobabble. Let’s do it again soon.