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Columns

May 28, 2009

This Wonderful Life: I heart the radio. A lot.

Of all the 20th-century media out there (newspapers, television, magazines), radio is the one I would miss the most if it completely disappeared. With the proliferation of iPods and other MP3 players, radio stations are struggling to keep listeners. Why take a chance on the radio when you can plug in all your favorite music or listen to a podcast or book?



Don’t even get me started on in-car DVD players that make it possible to spend a full day on the road with your children without ever having to actually have a conversation with them.



Not me. I love the radio. I love the pure, random magic of it. I love that I’m not in control of it.



One minute I am back in 10th grade, earnestly singing along with Simple Minds, imploring the universal ``You’’ not to forget about me.



The next minute, I am listening to The Pointer Sisters’ ``Slow Hand,’’ and envisioning a compilation CD entitled ``Mid-1980s Divorcee Rock.’’ My mind wanders to the possibilities of the playlist. The Pointer Sisters’ ``Slow Hand,’’ Juice Newton’s ``Queen of Hearts,’’ anything at all from the Barbra Streisand/Barry Gibb collaboration known asá ``Guilty,’’ which included such unforgettable divorcee classics as ``A Woman in Love,’’ ``What Kind of Fool’’ and the title track, ``Guilty.’’



To quote: ``And we got nothing to be guilty of Our love will climb any mountain near or far, we are And we never let it end...’’



If you were a child of a 1980s divorce (or a participant in one), that song might just be stuck in your head all day. Sorry about that.



Radio doesn’t even have to be good to be satisfying. I love the fact that, although I would never in a million years seek out the song `Easy Lover,’’ by Phil Collins and Philip Bailey, I can almost certainly count on hearing it on some central New York radio station or another if I spend any time in the car.

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