Wednesday, February 26, 2014

ROBBLOG #529

Recently, I was asked if I would return to the Terrestrial airwaves if I had the chance.
 
My answer.
It would depend.
No weekends.
Middays would be best and of course I would have to enjoy the music I am playing.
 
Hey, I am not asking for much.
It would be fun being at an FM station again but it would also take away a lot of freedom I currently enjoy both with my free time and with my own online stations Swisssh and Starlite. I would also expect that a Terrestrial company wouldn’t be too happy with me operating two stations- even though my stations are technically quite different from AM/FM stations, as well as the fact they reach a world-wide audience.
 
 
 
It would be something to think about.
Of course, I would have to have a bunch of fun too.
That goes without saying.
However, I don’t see that day arriving or me even being asked to return to FM Radio.
For one thing, I think I am past my date of expiration.
I wouldn’t get paid enough. Probably just minimum wage and I could find myself filling in for vacationing full-timers.
Been there.
Done that.
 
Again, it would be something to think about.
 
Radio Broadcasting has changed so much. Consultants and greedy managers have done that. Few stations care about the listener anymore- although they would say they still do. Consultants- for the big Broadcasting Companies tell stations what audiences want and in turn tell a station what to play and how to go about it. Sure, there are still small stations in small markets that do the job that radio started doing decades ago. Today that seems to be the domain of community stations.
We could use a community station here in Central Ontario- Orillia specifically.
The Holier-than-Thou CRTC up in Ottawa usually grants Community operations licences when everything on the application is in order- or so I’ve heard. An online operation in Huntsville was recently granted a spot on the FM dial. They hope to be on-air come the spring.
 
 
A friend of mine- Don Andrews, does a morning radio show from his home studio in Scarborough Monday through Friday mornings and it is currently picked up by two stations- no not Swisssh or Starlite. He had hoped to have a network of stations pick up his show but that hasn’t happened- yet. Don’s on air from 9 to noon (ET) and his programme on “Studio B” (Google Studio B) is very entertaining- even though he currently gears it towards an American audience since the station in California that picks his show up has a larger audience that it’s Canadian Counterpart.
Why?
I don’t know but maybe it's because Canadians lag behind both the UK and the US when it comes to listening to Online Radio stations. As well, there are thousands to choose from. Maybe that’s a problem- too much choice.
I did a survey recently. One of the questions asked if Data plan usage was a concern. The Radio Survey found that data plans are not a Canadian concern.
 
I guess I’d also like to know why and how a broadcaster such as John Tesh gets his mediocre radio show on so many stations both here in Canada and abroad. A team of writers script his breaks- which for the most part are all survey-based. It’s true, bringing in this red-blooded American to pretend he’s actually a part of a Canadian radio station is cost-effective however, Don Andrews and his Studio B would present a better radio programme and live too- not voice tracked (meaning  previously recorded), like Mr. Tesh. Don’s mid-morning show is competitively priced too meaning he won’t get rich soon- unless he has thousand stations picking up the Studio B feed. I’m sure he’d do an evening feed- if the money was right.
 
If you’re a radio person reading this, please consider Mr. Andrews and his show. It’s an eclectic mix of tunes strung together with Don’s engaging, down to earth, on-air personality.
Maybe too, one fine day Don will be able to be a Broadcaster who can speak of world-wide events instead of pandering to the Yanks who- we are told, get confused if topics are “off American” and of little concern to the day to day lives of Americans. That being said, I can tell you right now Swisssh Radio has more Americans listening that any other country in the world and I don’t change Swisssh- or Starlite to sound more American. Listeners tell me they just like the sound of a radio station providing music and entertainment to its listeners.
 
I have never had an e-mail from a listener south of the border asking for Swisssh to be more American. I’ve never had a German listener asking Swisssh to be more German either. Swisssh and Starlite are an entity onto themselves and I for one applaud them for that wholeheartedly.
 
And that Dear Readers is what it’s all about.
 
 

Monday, February 17, 2014

ROBBLOG #528

So, this dastardly winter continues.
 
Almost March and no break from the piles of snow along our street or the streets throughout Orillia. Driving is still treacherous and walking not much better. On days when one is able to venture outdoors, the wind chill relentlessly bites at your nose and cheeks.
It’s no fun.
 
This winter weather has such extremes. Biggest floods in decades in Britain. Snow in Hong Kong and Japan. Drought in California and South America.
What gives?
 
Yesterday I read it’s the warming of the Arctic causing all this cold. I don’t profess to understand it all. Apparently the Arctic is feeling the effects of global warming faster than the rest of us and consequently it’s affecting our weather driving huge and winter storms and cold temperatures our way. However, I am not blaming it all on the Arctic. Many of our storms this winter have come from Texas. Yes, the Texans shall not go blameless. They have caused some of this snow accumulation and they’ve even has had their share of snow.
Payback.
 
So, what have I been doing to pass the winter days?
I’ve been dreaming of warmer climes- even a few degrees warmer.
Recently, I have been checking out Sidney, British Columbia. A community just a bit north- 20 minutes or so, of Victoria BC on the southern tip of Vancouver Island. Actually, Victoria International Airport is right in Sidney’s back yard.
How convenient!
The small downtown is charming with a gaggle of shops and services.
The ocean with its Orcas and Dolphins is magical and weather-wise the chance of snow is very slim. Plus, it’s still Canada so we don’t have to live amongst American propaganda- if we choose not to which is a good thing no matter where you live in Canada.
 
 
So, what’s not to like about Sidney?
It’s a smallish community with a lot of retirees.
The winters are short.
There can be a lot of cloud and rain but rarely any snow. I’ll bet they keep a plow in mothballs- just in case.
 
Years ago, I remember hearing that Victoria- the capital, had only one snowplow and on the odd occasion when they had to deal with a few centimetres of the white stuff they threw off the canvas tarp, gassed it up and took it for a spin around a few downtown streets.
 
Recently, I chatted with a Bell Mobility employee about the weather when I was switching my mobile account to Rogers. Bell was doing a good job, it’s just that a corporate family plan was available from Rogers so, my husband wanted me to switch companies. Anyway, the personable young lady was very helpful at Bell. As she closed my account, I had the opportunity to ask where she was located.
She told me Victoria.
This was a day after we had received mega snow and our temperatures were less than warming.
I told her what our weather was like that particular day.
She seemed surprized.
She told me she had to scrape some frost off her car windshield one morning recently- before she drove to work.
It sounded like a bit of a hardship.
How do Victorians get through a winter like that?
My heart ached for her.
Such a hardship.
 
So, with this awful, relentless winter I have been looking at western climes as I am sure many other Eastern Canadians have been doing. I am ready to pull up stakes and leave our hard winters behind. Now, I just have to convince my Tom, who hasn’t completely warmed to the idea when I speak of it- although he looks at the photos and the real estate pages with me.
He’s still needs to be defrosted.
 
That reminds me.
I need to pick up some more de-icing salt for the walkways.
 
Happy shovelling!

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

ROBBLOG #527

There are some things I just don’t care about much.
 
Do you feel that way as well? I believe there just isn’t time to care about everything or everybody today- even if you try to. Here’s a list of some things I don’t care about much.
 
1. Winter and snow. In fact I don’t care at all. I have seen enough snow this year to last a lifetime. Now, can we please get back to global warming?
 
2. CBC Radio. One. Two. Three or more. I couldn’t care less but I know a lot of people do.
 
3. The Olympics. Get a life. These games do little to bring the peoples of the earth together.
 
4. Stephen Harper and anything Conservative.
 
5. Justin Bieber
 
6. Rob Ford. Isn’t there a chunk of ice in Nunavut we could put him on? If it’s a big piece of ice, thrown his brother on it too.
 
7. Rednecks.
 
8. Drivers who don’t signal their intent.
 
9. January and February. This may have been covered in point one but it bears repeating.
 
10. The 1970’s
 
11. A long drive to someplace.
 
12. Watching or listening to the news.
 
13. Gossips.
 
14. Snowbanks. Again, this may have been covered in point 1 and point 9.
 
15. Pauline what’s-her-name in Quebec. If we could squeeze her on that hunk of ice in point 6….
 
16. Roses on Valentine Day.
 
17. Famous folk who destroy their lives on drugs.
 
18. Organized religion.
 
19. Violence on Film and Television.
 
20. Lists

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

ROBBLOG #526

It was a Thursday afternoon, just a little past one-fifteen.
 
The day was sunny and hot.
There didn’t seem to be a breath of air anywhere- either in Heaven or down on Earth.
God liked it hot.
In fact, on this particular Thursday, he had yet to turn on a fan anywhere in the whole house, so it seemed incredibly hot to those visitors who dropped by- like the scribes who were writing God’s Memoirs or the Lepers who were in the process of being healed.
Yes, leprosy had reared its ugly head in Heaven in recent years and Heaven’s scientists were working hard towards an anti-biotic that would put an end to rotting fingers, toes and penises.
However, the scientists weren’t quite there yet, so as usual, the task to cure Heavenly inhabitants fell into the lap of God the Father Almighty- for the time being.
Still, God liked it hot, much to the chagrin of the Lepers and others.
Not as hot as “Hell-Hot” but still hot.
No, Heaven on this particular Thursday afternoon was nothing like the heat that rose up from the constantly burning fires in the pits of unholy hell but all the same, God liked it pretty warm.
 
He sat in a comfy chair by an open window that overlooked His garden, reading the afternoon edition of The Daily Heavenly News while sipping on a tall glass of pink lemonade.
Ahhh…God knew that this was the life!
 
The Holy Land- soon to be created down below on Earth, would have all that dust and camel dung but he knew he would take Heaven every time. God even liked Heaven better than his summer home on the planet Krylord. The idea of a separate planet away from Heaven would eventually be attributed to the teachings of the Mormon Church, that is, once he found a man who would dig up a few golden plates and contrive a story so believable, hundreds of people would follow the charismatic leader across a vast continent to build a church that eventually would be the subject of a smash Broadway Musical.
God was getting a little ahead of himself.
 
All God really wanted to do was please all the soon-to-be religions that would someday spread across the surface of the Earth. He decided to make the planet Krylord from wool fibre and moisture he had gathered from the catch drain in the floor of his laundry room. Not quite the Fairy Godmother’s “bibbedy-boppedy-booing” and presto there’s a coach for Cinderella- but similar. So, it came to pass that the planet Krylord- about a forty minute flight away on cloud nine, was created on a Wednesday afternoon.
 
About that same time on this incredibly hot Thursday afternoon, shepherds were shuffling their feet- along with their sheep, down the street past God’s two storey, detached, Craftsmen style-bungalow when God’s eyes suddenly fell from the Daily Guardian onto earth below. God had had a skylight installed in the garden recently, so he was able to see all the way down to Earth and into the Garden of Eden. Prior to this innovation, God had to walk down the street, past the Heavenly Tim Horton’s and peer over the edge of the cliff at the rear of the Tim Horton’s parking lot to gaze down at Earth. The skylight meant God could peer out his window anytime- day or night, keeping an eye on Adam and Eve.
 
 
As he looked down through the skylight his eyes landed upon Eve sitting all alone on a mossy-covered stump in the centre of the Garden of Eden.
She seemed perplexed.
She seemed angry.
She seemed both perplexed and angry.
God called down to Eve- “Everything alright Eve?”
Eve was startled at first.
She looked up and saw God gazing down at her. She wrapped an arm across her breasts.
“Oh hi God.”-Eve called back waving with her free arm. “What can I do for you on this delightful- yet warm, Thursday?”
“Oh nothing in particular...”- said God softly.
He paused.
“Everything Okay with you?”- God wasn’t sure if it was any of his business but since he was both the creator of Heaven and Earth He allowed his question to stand.
Eve soon answered.
“Oh …yes…well…things are fine, I guess.”
“Just fine? I would say there’s a problem?”- said God. “Am I right?”
He paused again-
“Say Eve, where’s Adam at?”
“Well, God. That’s just it. He and Steve are over at the swimming hole by the big date palm and they’re skinning dipping!”
 
 
 
God’s hands started to shake a little.
“Are you telling me Eve that Adam and Steve- not Adam and Eve have gone skinny dipping?”
 
Eve hollered back- “Yes. That and so much more God”- she shook her head- “So. Much. More.”
 
Now God was perplexed.
He had a picture of Adam and Steve in his mind’s eye. A pair of young, sun-bronzed men getting up to playful hi-jinks only two, naked, sun-bronzed young men could get up to. It was a pretty sight but certainly not the type of situation that Eve wanted to see.
 
He tried to think of the right thing to say.
You know, like words of comfort for Eve- but he had nothing.
Nada.
Blank.
Then, he had a thought. He looked down at Eve and once again spoke to her.
“Eve?”
 
“Yes God, I’m still here. Alone. Sitting on this mossy-covered stump, getting green moss stains all over my ass.”
 
God smiled and looked down upon Eve- who once again covered her exposed breast. With the most love and understanding he could muster said-
“Sorry, about that! This changes everything. Look, can I get back to you?”
 
Eve looked up at God and saying not a word, stood up from the mossy-covered stump. She did indeed have green stains all over the cheeks of her ass. God could see that all the way up in Heaven as Eve turned and ran deep into the Garden of Eden.
 
As she ran, her tits flopped back and forth, slapping and smacking against each other in the hot, sticky, humid air of  a Thursday afternoon.