Mudcat Café message #880769 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #56327   Message #880769
Posted By: Don Firth
02-Feb-03 - 03:02 PM
Thread Name: BS: I'll read that again
Subject: RE: BS: I'll read that again
During the early Seventies I worked for a year at a radio station in Pasco, Washington, where I was acting news director (which is to say, I had the responsibility but not the pay) and also did a daily board shift (jockeying discs). The station played, essentially, elevator music (Yumm!!). Someplace along the line we got a new station manager who wasn't too picky about who he hired (his criterion was, "Do they work cheap?"). We wound up with a kid fresh out of high school, still sporting his acne, deficient in reading skills, with a vocabulary consisting of about thirty one-syllable words, and a burning ambition to become big-time rock-jock. At best, the gaffs, goofs, and mispronunciations were hilarious; at worst, they were sufficiently horrifying that I stopped telling people I met what station I worked for. I really wish I'd taken notes, because some of them were inadvertently brilliant, but I think I've repressed most of them. He back-announced a Billy Vaughan record by calling him "Billy VAH-gun." What he did with Ferrante and Teicher is impossible to duplicate. When he read the news, I hid under the rug. The Vietnam war was on, and I think he was under the impression that Vietnam was somewhere near Denmark. And then he did a commercial for a posh restaurant where he had to read some items from their French menu. What he did with "coq au vin," "coquille Saint Jacque," and "paté de fois gras" was a wonder to behold!

I was working at the station full-time. I quit, returned to Seattle, took a weekend announcing job at a classical music station (had to pass a pretty rigorous pronunciation audition), doubled my weekly income, and increased my prestige in the community a hundredfold. I loved radio . . . back then.

Don Firth