Radiogurl a la Carte

Monday, Apr. 10, 2006
Who's Afraid of the Girly Cuisine?

Next time I decide to go into business "on the side," somebody kindly give me a nice healthy kick in the backside, okay? There's plenty of space for your boot. It's a nice big target. God knows, I deserve it. (The sole of the foot to the posterior, I mean.)

In all reality, I am glad that the business is taking off - but for a lot of reasons, I'm having to pick up a heavy share of the work right now, predominantly because if it involves phone calls or driving, I either have to do it by default (as I have the vehicle) or I end up doing it because I'm the known factor and people call and ask for me by name. Or they phone me at the radio station. I assume as time goes on that will change. In fact, for some aspects of the business, they do ask now for MC, rather than for me. One can always hope that trend will continue.

Today got a leeeettle bit nuts because I had to schedule a late interview on the air. These folks timed it beautifully, too. The local high school is building a culinary arts program, working to turn ye olde Home Ec into legitimate career training. I mean, they aren't fooling around: the high school is now licensed as a restaurant and has established a catering service. Trouble is, they have a 1970's-era kitchenZ: small potatoes, so to speak, because in the 70's it wasn't a popular course and it wasn't business-centric. The kids are now working on fund-raisers to build a state-of-the-art kitchen that'll actually be training for chefs and caterers.

Since the Bushwhacker's No Child Left Behind program doesn't bother to fund anything but incessant, redundant, inane testing, little things like facilities and useful information doesn't get funded unless the kids and parents and community pull together.

These kids are sharp, by the way; of the two young guests on my show this morning, one of the young women just won a $48,000 scholarship in national competition. That's first place, y'all. And the other young lady was no slouch, either. I only wish every guest was as intelligent, personable and well-spoken as these two!

I always love the opportunity to help with local causes, and I love living here because despite our minimal size, community support and community spirit are in the stratosphere. People here care. After so many years of dealing with the apathy quotient of the opposite end of the county, I'm blown away by the participation levels here. Very few community projects fall by the wayside, and as a result, the quality levels are consistently high. The expectations are high and if things run a bit short, someone is invariably there to help pick up the loose ends.

Of course immediately on the heels of this interview I had to make a mad dash across town for a last-second meeting to do with the business. By the time everything was done, I had ten minutes to squeeze in for lunch - and even that was an hour and a half late.

Aaaarrrgh... I just opened my twisterjester.com email account. I've got 82 new messages in the last two hours. Perhaps the scariest part? Only seven of them are spam. That means I got 75 ACTUAL emails in the last two hours. As in, emails I need to read and maybe answer. *Pounding head on keyboard.* The majority are part of a mailing list to which I belong and I can reply to one in a series and nobody will be upset (hopefully) but still...

Again, keep in mind that's in the past two hours. I already dealt with that many earlier this morning, incidentally. And that's just one email address out of a few. Let's not talk about all of 'em combined.

I discovered another new artist over the past few days. The man is a fellow Doctor Who fan and he posted a link to a novelty song he'd recorded, and I love it. It's got this whole David-Bowie-aka-Ziggy-Stardust quality to it. The song's called Android Men. The link to his site is www.mcallister-productions.com. I intend to listen to some of his other stuff, just haven't had a lot of time to listen to anything lately with all of the other hullabaloo.

Donpaul isn't everyone's cuppa, granted - but frankly his Android Men is better than a lot of the subscriber bits for which your average radio station is bilked billed beaucoup cash.

On the flipside of that coin, there's a production company that's forever sending me unsolicited CD's from unknown artists. Some of them are all right, and maybe one or two are really good. The vast majority are so atrocious it hurts my ears to listen. They had some yahoo phone me in mid-live-interview this morning to take a survey of which of their dreck I'm playing.

As tempting as it was, I didn't use the death-feedback weapon on him then and there, but I am keeping it in reserve and powered up, just in case they call again. I'm erecting anti-Luke-Skywalker paraphernalia to make sure it remains operational, so anyone reading this can knock off the plans to wipe out my evil mini-empire. It's called, "Piss me off again and anything you send to me in the future goes directly to the circular file, with a lighter-fluid chaser. Your CDs will become fuel for my next barbecue, sucker!"

Saddest part is that the artist they're pushing hardest is one of their worst. I don't know if this is one of those places that promotes according to how much cash the artist shells out or what, but they've got a lot better prospects than this guy. I won't embarrass him by posting his name here but man... if I sang like that I wouldn't be trying to pass myself off as a professional musician, or even a musical hobbyist.

I grew up in a musical family, one in which if you didn't play at least two different musical instruments and write your own songs by the time you were a teenager, you were considered deficient. I mean, I'm not just talking about my immediate family: every year for Christmas, we had a 30+ piece band in an uncle's or a cousin's back room. I took it for granted that nearly everyone knew how to carry a tune (if not harmonize) when they were kids, even though obviously I knew there were a few people who were tone deaf. I just didn't realize that the tone-deaf element would fancy themselves singers. I thought they were sort of minimally handicapped, kind of like being color blind. I don't know if that's an accurate analogy or not. I suppose the rest of the world doesn't think that way. Only difference is that most people who are color blind don't consider themselves to be color experts, do they?

Furthermore, even though I can carry a tune and can harmonize and write music (my final exam in music theory, in my high school freshman year, was to compose, orchestrate and conduct my own symphony) I don't consider myself a musician. I appreciate that my voice has put food on the table, but I nonetheless hate the sound of it, whether for singing or talking. Not long after I started this diary I posted a link to a song in which I overdubbed my voice singing all three parts. To me it was somewhere between marginal and mediocre and truly bad. There are places where I was a hair off key or off timing. But compared to some of the stuff we get into the studios and asked to play...

Oh well, at least as station manager I've got the option of tossing things out, and I do. I know that for some of these artists I'm tossing their dreams away, but I figure I'm doing them a favor. If they hope to feed themselves this way, they'll be doing better as actors. They can play the parts of the pirates in the Pirates of the Caribbean movies. They'll be the skeletons. (Just kidding, arc-angel666.)

All right, enough sicko asides and snarkalicious remarks for one day. I'm already working on my next template for this diary. I like the antique roses all right, but it's a little too frou-frou. I have an antique map-and-compass image I prefer. Same general color scheme, just a bit less girly. I like girly all right, in its place; but its place isn't my online place.

Before - After

In the grander scheme of things, no soul can truly be replaced. Each one of us has a place in the universal tapestry. We each contribute our own color and texture. When one thread is snipped too soon, it distorts all the threads around it. Other lives can unravel and tear. If the wrong thread is ripped away, the whole fabric of life becomes dangerously fragile.
- LeiLani, aka Radiogurl aka Bright Opal (1957 - )