Saturday, April 18, 2009

Leg Driving

In this day and age of skypes, tweets, twats, and whatever newfangled technology is around the corner for instant communication, I feel compelled to enter an area of virgin territory: blogging EXTREME-style. Let me explain.

You see, I received the most perfectly poured medium hot regular from Dunkies while on Friday morning and became overcome with inspiration. Oftentimes while driving, too many good ideas seem to evaporate from my head before I get the chance to sit down at a computer. Not this time, though. I decided to write a running diary of my stream of consciousness – while driving. Note to the life insurer where my application is pending: I promise this was only a one-time thing. Here we go…

After witnessing an old lady disapprovingly wag her index finger at the car in front of me as it ran a red light, I wondered if AM/FM radio would still be a standard feature in cars by the time my little Gigi is old enough to drive. My job requires a lot of driving so I have very strong opinions on radio surfing. For example, I rarely ever keep a station on during commercials. Television ads are terrible, but radio ads are abysmal. Can’t handle them. Add coffee to the equation and my patience is nonexistent.

On this particular day, I was driving from New Bedford. While merging onto Route 140, I decided to start from the beginning – the 80’s of course. Considering the area, it was unsurprising that most of these stations were in Portugese. Lots of words ending in “oosh” and “gow.” Cool, but I need tunes. SEEK. Let the diary begin.

Pink. The song about her divorce. She irritates me but kinda intrigues me at the same time. I imagine sex with her involves crashing into a lot of things in the room. Not sure why. SEEK.

Ray Lamontagne. Great musician. Depressing, though. He kinda makes you want to drink a bottle of whiskey and cry yourself to sleep. I need something different. SEEK. Commercials. SEEK. More commercials. SEEK.

John Lennon. Imagine. Of course Easy 99.1 nailed it. Their motto: “Yesterday’s easy. Today’s easy. Enough said.” Damn right, enough said. Lennon and Hemingway are always the people I say when focus group screeners ask me if I could have dinner with any 2 people in the world, who would it be? I love The Beatles, but I’m not too fond of McCartney. When is the last time he put out a new song that was relevant? Ebony & Ivory? Say, Say, Say? If Lennon was alive today, are you telling me he wouldn’t be cranking out redonkulous collaborations with Jay-Z, Jack White, or Britney? Ok maybe not Britney.

New song. The Commodores. Night shift. This song always makes me a little sad when I hear that part: “Marvin … you were a friend of mine.” Speaking of collaborations, could you imagine Marvin Gaye with Timbaland or Usher? What a shame.

New song. I think it’s Bob Seger and I think it’s called “We’ve got tonight.” For some reason, this song reminds me of Family Ties. I think Alex Keaton and his girlfriend slow danced to it in a climactic love scene. Man, you gotta love the 80’s – and Easy 99.1, for that matter. I’m singing the back-up melody part (“I know it’s late, I know you’re weary. WEARY.”) when suddenly my tires hit the breakdown lane markers. Whoops! Okay I’m back in my lane.

New song. Michael McDonald. Ahhhhh! IMMEDIATE SEEK.

Eventually we land on another ringer. Magic 106.7. Sir Elton. Tiny Dancer. Jackpot. My favorite part hasn’t happened yet. To be fair, EJ hasn’t put out anything lately that’s relevant either. Does musical creativity die when musicians hit their 40’s? Wait, here it comes. “Softly … Slowly. HOLD ME CLOSER, tiny daaan-cer. Something, something on the highway.” Of course my thoughts drift to Penny Lane in Almost Famous. Kate Hudson is pretty hot. But she doesn’t make my top 5 fave actors. 1. Meryl Streep. (The best.) 2. Gary Oldman. (Human chameleon.) 3. Viggo Mortensen. (I’ve got a man crush on this dude and it has nothing to do with his full frontal scene in Eastern Promises.) 4. Jeffrey Wright. (He will win an Oscar once he gets a proper lead role.) 5. Brendan Fraser. (Joking. I’d rather get punched in the face than see a movie with him in it.) Commercial. SEEK.

Kiss 108. Good song. “Speed of Light” I think by Chris Brown the wife beater. I’m doing my patented shoulder shimmy shake dance move. This song might’ve been on So You Think You Can Dance. Can’t wait for the next season. New song now. “My-my-my-my poker face, my-my poker face.”

Commercial. Now off to the world of AM, which rocks for four reasons. Number one - live sports. Nothing on today, but I love listening to baseball on the radio. It soothes me. No games on at this hour.

Number two - WBZ 1030’s traffic on the 3s. I want to know what it’s like to be paid to ride in a helicopter to broadcast about Boston’s traffic, which is exactly the same every single day. “93 southbound, you’re backed up all the way to the Schraft building. 93 northbound, you’re crawling until the Gas Tank and then speed picks up to 5 miles per hour. Pike eastbound, you’re basically stopped from the Weston tolls onward. This is Joe Morgan in the Commerce Insurance COP-terrrr.”

Number three – sports talk. The wife hates it when we listen to any sports radio so this is primarily a solitary activity. I love Dale & Holley. I also enjoy this random degenerate gambling show where prognosticators predict spreads and best bets. It’s hilarious. I tolerate Mike & Mike (they kiss everyone’s ass) and Colin Cowherd (he knows everything so don’t bother disagreeing). I despise Dennis & Callahan (focus on sports, stay out of politics) and the Whiner Line.

Number four – news. NPR (actually on FM) and WBZ give me most of my news. I love BBC News Hour, especially. Something about listening to speakers with UK accents makes me feel smarter.

I don’t listen to the buzz kill otherwise known as talk radio. Rush Limbaugh, Laura Ingram, and Howie Carr are the kids you know from back in grade school who talk over everyone else in the room and raise their voices when someone dares to disagree. They have all the answers because they can speak louder than you. I don’t know why they don’t just run for office and fix all of our problems. Oh yeah, because they’d never get elected or succeed in running our country. It’s easier to just sit back, declare provocative opinions for notoriety, armchair quarterback the elected officials actually doing real work, and never be subject to any standard of performance except ratings.

Anyway, I’m feeling like I need music again. I just passed the Gas Tank (actually going 50 m.p.h.) so I’m nearing the home stretch. Nice! Kelly Clarkson. What is it about her music that makes you want to do aerobics with sweat bands and hand weights? (Pat, you know what I’m talking about!) “My life … would suck … without you.” How romantic.

Okay, the caffeine’s beginning to wane. I’ve completed my EXTREME-blog experience. I hope you made it this far. If not, I understand. Any other road trippers with strong opinions on radio surfing? As one of my sports radio shows say, “And we gone.”


Melissa said...

"redonkulous" - BEST EVER! i use that word all the time! hahaa.

great post once again. i don't have a car anymore but i do miss the endless fight with the radio...

pat said...

my feelings for kelly are my own and i would appreciate it if you kept it that way. who am i kidding? since you been gone - greatest evah!!!

Scott Stevens said...

I am a huge Ray Lamontagne fan but I have to admit, your description is spot on. Probably not a guy you should listen to if you are depressed and near sharp objects.

What happened to Elton John? He is awful now. His old music is so good and now he just writes a song once every 5 years for a Disney movie. By the way, I hate Kate Hudson's guts. I wish her and Gwyneth Paltrow's 15 minutes would end soon.

Shannon said...

Love seeking and playing "name that tune" on the radio. Am a total surfer but also love to stop and listen to the ones I can totally belt out. Question: Are we more likely to surf w/ others in the car to avoid being made fun of for stopping on Lionel Richie's All Night Long? And lastly - lately I've been a big fan of 92.9. Seems like they have fewer commercials and no horrendous morning radio personalities.

Kaelen said...

Some things never change. I can't believe you don't like WEEI's politics - that is where I go to learn about what idiots these days think about the world. They DRIVE ME NUTS and they are the reason I won't turn on 850 anymore. Thanks for understanding. I don't think KK or gigi are going to have a radio period in their cars when they get older... it will probably be piped into an embedded chip in their ear... BTW... I am not able to listen to the radio anymore unless I am alone in the car which is almost never. I have to listen to, "KK's music please" which includes the ever popular Farmer in the Dell on repeat 40 times!!!!!!!!! Argh!