I don’t know how Herself does it.
This morning, like most mornings I switched on her radio.
I should point out that her radio is one of those Interwebby things – no aerial socket or any of that – it just requires a healthy dose of Wifi. As a result it can tune into an apparently infinite choice of radio stations.
She could listen to Calypso live streamed from the Caribbean. She can listen to Jazz from New Orleans. She can brush up on her French by tuning into any number of French stations. She could even possibly heat her room by tuning into a Sidney channel in Australia. The choice is vast and varied.
“What station?” says I.
“RTE of course” says she.
It’s always RTE.
Now I have nothing personally against RTE. After all, they pay my pension so I owe them a modicum of deference, but frankly their premier radio station is shite. I wouldn’t listen to it even if it were the only station broadcasting during a nuclear war [a topic they would no doubt love to cover]. I find it alternates between thoroughly depressing subjects or sport.
I can hear the radio in the background in the other room all day. It is all people talking. They are talking about politics, depression, suicide and a rake of other subjects guaranteed to brighten your day. It’s no wonder Herself ends the day in a not so cheerful state.
I have asked her why she listens to it. She tells me it is so she can keep up to date with current affairs. I tell her I am probably more up to date by browsing a few newspapers and am getting a broader perspective, and anyway what has depression got to do with current affairs? She says the stories are tragic and should be heard. I tell her I have enough ways of depressing myself. She calls me a heartless fucker. I call her a masochistic twat. Harmony is thus restored and I leave the room none the wiser and firmly closing off the drone from the radio.
The only time I ever listen to the radio is in the car on a long drive on my own. My very limited choice of channels there means I am usually stuck with Lyric FM which is a nominally classical music station. I say nominally because they frequently descend into what my mother used to call “low brow classical”.
There is one other time I listen though. Last thing in the evening when we are bored with television I’ll switch over to Classic FM.
Now that’s what I call radio.