Today is National Radio Day, according to the national calendar. In this digital age, I wonder how many people still use radios. I rarely do, now that I have a smart speaker that can play the stations to which I enjoy listening.
When I was growing up in Tucson, Arizona, I had a transistor radio. I loved carrying it around the house. After my younger brother was born and I started acting up in second grade, Mother took it away from me for a day or two as punishment. I missed hearing my favorite songs and commercials and occasionally calling in requests. When I was a little older, I discovered an easy listening station with some classical programming that I also liked.
That radio lasted until we moved to Sheridan, Wyoming, in the summer of 1973. We stayed with Grandma for a couple of months until we found a house of our own. I slept with Grandma and loved waking up to her radio each morning. She preferred news programming. At the age of twelve, I couldn’t understand why but soon learned from her the importance of knowing what was going on in the world.
After we were settled in a home of our own, I got a clock radio for Christmas. Because of my limited vision, although I could read the time on the digital display, I couldn’t set it or the alarm. But I enjoyed waking up each morning to the same news programming and listening to popular music.
When I was in high school, one of our A.M. stations started broadcasting old episodes of The Lone Ranger, The Shadow, and some comedy. An F.M. station broadcast a mystery theater program. These helped me escape in a way television never did.
In college, my favorite shows were those containing count-downs of the most popular songs in a given week.
When my clock radio finally quit working, I asked my parents for another radio for my birthday during the summer of 1984 and got a lot more. First, there was a receiver, then a cassette deck. For Christmas that year, I finally got a Cd player. It was more than I could ever have dreamed, and since many of my friends in college also had stereos, I was elated. A year later, I discovered public radio and enjoyed news, classical music, jazz, and programs like A Prairie Home Companion. I lost interest in popular music.
Through the years and many radios, I continued listening to public radio. I still do today. I ask Alexa to play my local station each morning so, like my grandmother, I can be aware of what’s going on in the world. While working, I ask Alexa to play the station’s classical and jazz programming. I’ve also re-kindled my interest in songs that were popular when I was growing up. So, I sometimes ask her for Amazon music stations that play 1970’s and 80’s music. I still have a radio/CD player combination that belonged to my late husband, but I rarely use it.
How about you? What do you remember about radios when you were growing up? Do you still use one today?
In my new novel, The Red Dress, my main character hears, on her college roommate’s radio, the song to which she danced with the boy of her dreams before catching him in the act with her best friend. I’ll be signing copies of this book on Saturday, August 24th, from 1-3 p.m. at Sheridan Stationery Books and Gallery, located at 206 North Main Street in Sheridan, Wyoming. See below for more information about the book.
This establishment has crated a Facebook event. Even if you’re unable to attend, please at least like the page and be sure to share it with your friends. Thank you.
Copyright July 2019 by DLD Books
When Eve went to her high school senior prom, she wore a red dress that her mother had made for her. That night, after dancing with the boy of her dreams, she caught him in the act with her best friend. Months later, Eve, a freshman in college, is bullied into giving the dress to her roommate. After her mother finds out, their relationship is never the same again.
Twenty-five years later, Eve, a bestselling author, is happily married with three children. Although her mother suffers from dementia, she still remembers, and Eve still harbors the guilt for giving the dress away. When she receives a Facebook friend request from her old college roommate and an invitation to her twenty-five-year high school class reunion, then meets her former best friend by chance, she must confront the past in order to face the future.
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