Monday, September 21, 2009

Late Night Radio Waves

Last night I listened to some community radio while I was washing dishes. It was after 10:00, which is the best time to listen to community or college radio stations, because somehow after nightfall, local radio broadcasts sound kind of alien. The DJ sounds like he's transmitting from some lonely outpost, and you are the only one receiving the signal. You are the only connection to civilization this poor, stranded DJ has---or so it seems.

The show I was listening to, on 90.1 KKFI, was Moby's Trip. The show is described on KKFI's website this way:

"Moby's Trip is a show chock full of buttery psychedelic music goodness with existential sprinkles. Its a rock-n-roll show and a breath mint recommended by four out of five doctors. Anything could turn up here. There's a little saying we have 'round here ,'s just not your audio wallpaper anymore." C'mon on by for a listen. It only bites if you let it. And you'll want to let it. I promise. "

Local singer songwriter Forrest Whitlow was in the station, and he performed a couple of folk songs live while I wiped ketchup off the plates and scrubbed fried-on hamburger grease off the skillet. Then it was some scratchy record going round and round on a turntable and some old man from out of the past wailing in a thin voice. Reminds me of one of the most delightful nighttime drives I've ever known--I was driving through a deep void on some pitch black highway late one night, somewhere hundreds of miles from home, and I was listening to an old Hank Williams cassette tape I had. There was nothing in the inky dark but a tiny piece of road in front of my headlight and the thin, nasal twang of Williams, crying out like a ghost. It truly sounded as if I had driven off some slope of time and had got myself lost in a leftover remnant of old radio waves still floating in space.


  1. well my goodness,,now i gotta know,,,where the heck were you driving,,and why?? and how old were you?

  2. I'm trying to remember where that was. I'm sure I was in my early thirties. Isn't it a shame?--I can't remember right off.

  3. i just re-read your post. and i was immediately struck by the total difference in our lifestyles. not that that is a bad thing.....but you wrote about washing dishes at 10pm. akk! oh, sometimes i long for that rhythm of the day that i would be up and listening to the radio whilst washing dishes at 10pm! i think it's very european, eh?

  4. Perhaps --it may be European. It also is the mark of a woman who is full up busy and can't get to the dishes any earlier. We went to a deli for supper as part of a school fund-raiser, then I had heaps of laundry to do, and homework to help with, and tidying up to do, and....there never is enough time in a day.

  5. I like this--it gives me a Sci-Fi David Bowie feeling. I don't why, it just does!