One of the things I liked about the jobs I held in publishing was that there are no after-hours emergencies in publishing. Nobody ever calls at 5:45 on Sunday morning because a manuscript needs to be proofed. When you work at a desk from 8 to 5 every day, your time outside of 8-to-5 is almost entirely your own. Including holidays. In 1997, the Mrs. and I found ourselves working in offices that closed at noon on Christmas Eve. After having lunch together and running a couple of errands, we were home by 3:00. At that point, we looked at each other and said, “What do we do now?” Unstructured time on Christmas Eve—or, more specifically, time not owed to a radio station or a retail store—was something neither of us had experienced in nearly 20 years.
But as nice as all of that is, it’s not normal, not really. I’m a radio man, and for me, real life means working on holidays. It means coping with after-hours emergencies. Buy the ticket, take the ride.
I mention all this by way of introduction to my weekend. On Saturday, I worked a 10AM-3PM shift on Q106.3, the country station in our group. (During vacation season, I’ll be filling in for the people who are filling in.) On Saturday night, I worked my usual evening shift on Magic 98. Eight hours on the air in two shifts sounds like a lot, but it didn’t seem that way, because I had three hours off in the middle to recharge. (I can also use the money.) But then the weather went sideways late on Saturday night. I was on call for severe weather duty, so I had to go back in. I was at Magic from midnight until 3, watching the radar, scanning for bulletins, and doing updates on the air. In a 17-hour span, I was on the air someplace for 11 hours.
And I was happy as can be the whole damn time, which probably tells me something about my career in publishing, and everything not related to radio that I’ve tried to do these last several years.
I’ve got nothing else to add today, except that we’ve gone a while without posting any mp3s here, so here’s one that has nothing to do with the subject of this post so far. Mike Love is probably the least-loved member of the Beach Boys—by the other Beach Boys, to be sure, but also by the gang over at Popdose, the only site in the universe with this tag category. Love is the guy who hated Brian Wilson’s ornate experiments, described “Good Vibrations” as “avant-garde shit,” and filed several lawsuits against fellow members or their record labels, claiming retroactive songwriting credits or misuse of the Beach Boys name. (Plus he co-wrote “Kokomo,” which is sin enough for lots of people.) This week in 1978, his lone solo single to chart reached its peak on the Hot 100 at Number 28. Billed as “Celebration Featuring Mike Love,” “Almost Summer” was the title song from a movie, and was co-written by Brian Wilson and Al Jardine. If they’d known how much legal grief Love was going to cause them in succeeding years, they might not have bothered.
“Almost Summer”/Celebration Featuring Mike Love (out of print)