September 10: Flash Fiction Challenge

Written by Charli Mills

Charli Mills, a born buckaroo, makes literary art accessible at CarrotRanch.com. She writes about the veteran spouse experience and women forgotten to history.

September 11, 2020

The radio plays back-up to my primary sources of music. Wherever I have lived, the radio not only has provided background noise, but it has also connected me to place. If you’ve ever taken a long road trip,, you know how stations can fade in and out, imparting a distinct sound to towns, cities, and regions. Like Donny and Marie Osmond, some stations are a little bit country, and some are a little bit rock and roll. Born in 1967, I’ve known the radio as a life-long companion. A constant I rarely think about but would miss like a left kidney.

Cruising up the Keweenaw Peninsula, something I rarely do these days of COVID, I turned on the radio instead of listening to my digital playlists. Ads annoy me, and I flip to another station. We have five, including NPR and a station Michigan Tech University broadcasts. Actually, I think we have six, but I can’t listen to modern country. Ironic, given that I grew up on Johnny Cash, Earl Scruggs, Dolly Parton, Eddie Arnold, Charlie Pride, Hank Williams, and Loretta Lynn. My parents had a massive 8-track collection. The country classics came from my father’s family influence, but my mom’s family meant I also listened to Bobby Vinton, Frank Sinatra, some weird precursor to elevator music. My dad found more country music, collecting gunslinger ballads. My DNA carries the imprint of the entire Ennio Morricone soundtrack to The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly. My mom collected the Beatles and the Fifth Dimension.

Once, when I was 12, I requested the Greatest Hits from the 1700s from the Columbia House 8-track catalog that would arrive by post. I also wanted the latest Kiss 8-track. I can’t even begin to unpack my tastes in music. But the radio had its influence, too.

Occasionally I’d sneak the dial to KKBC, a rock station broadcasting seventy miles away from Reno, Nevada. That where I heard songs like Godzilla by Blue Oyster Cult. Columbia House didn’t carry such 8-tracks, or I didn’t know what they were. It was a new sound, but one my parents did not appreciate. Some nights, I leave the radio playing on low. One morning I woke up to, “KKBC’s gone country!” My parents delighted in that switch, and as a family, it introduced us to modern country that would dominate the ’80s  — Hank Williams, Jr., Roseanne Cash, Mickey Gilley, Charlie Daniels, Alabama, and Reba McEntire. I missed Godzilla but fell into a pre-teen crush with Bosephius.

One hundred miles northwest of where I grew up on the eastern slope of the Sierras, a teenaged boy, milking the family herd before he drove to high school, also caught the same radio broadcast I did. Five a.m. and he flipped on the radio and dialed in the rock music he loved, practicing his “Dead Fred” DJ voice, talking to the cows as he set up the morning milking. At six a,.m., we both heard, “KKBC’s gone country!” He flipped out, yelling obscenities at the radio. He’s never forgiven the station, and to this ,day can recite some of the best DJ moments and recalls more songs than my remembered Godzilla. Years before we’d ever meet, the Hub and I shared a moment on the radio.

Many states and radio stations later, we have a set of six stations tuned to our car radio. I can’t even tell you their call numbers. I’ve lost interest. It seems that part of moving on meant leaving behind favorite radio stations, and after Idaho, it became too hard. I carried my CD collection with me and had invested a fair amount in iTunes to play on a tiny shuffle smaller than a pack of gum. My CD player remains beyond my reach, and my computer upgrades don’t play CDs. I relied heavily on my iTunes but went I went Apple all the way, I messed up my music access.

Cue the orchestra to play something woeful. Sometimes, the hoops we jump through for technology sucks. Sometimes, our human brains glitch. When we got our other iProducts I forgot that I already had an iAccount for my shuffle, and I registered New iStuff with a different Apple ID. I kid you not, the magnificent empire of Apple with all its capabilities, and all the engineers who make the things work can’t connect my iTunes music to my iPhone or iMac because the IDs differ. But I have resiliency, so I found a way. I bought a Google Play membership and rebuilt my iTunes collection. Then I began to rebuild the CDs I missed the most. Then I built lists with Hank Williams, Jr and Blue Oyster Cult just because I could!

Do you remember cassette tapes? I thought they were THE THING! I had a player with a recorder and would sit in front of the radio to catch some of my favorite songs. You didn’t live the ’80s unless you had big bangs and cassette mixes with chopped off songs or a chatty DJ you wished would shut up and let the song fade. But you made do because you caught the song. These were my walking mixes, and you better believe — I had a walkman! Then came CDs. We bought a CD player in Montana that you could load six at a time. Magic! I had Yanni, Enya, Enigma, and Windam Hill New Age collections that I’d load to play in the evenings to cook, settle the kids, light candles, and read or write late at night. The memory brings such peace.

Digital playlists are a miracle to me. When I’d work out in the gym pre-back surgeries, I had my fem singers to fire me up — Tori Amos, Jewel, Sarah McLachlan, Natalie Merchant, Dido, and Paula Cole. I had all the CDs and carried a case to switch out CDs, longing for a way to play three songs of one, two of another, and so on. I yearned for the mixing ability of cassettes with the quality of the CD sound (and not having to use a pencil). Yes, I waited a long time for playlists and was satisfied with iTunes. But Google Play leveled up. Then came the email last month — they closed up shop. With so many other options, they decided not to offer such services. They offered to transfer all my albums from Journey and Bruce Springsteen to Chakra Dance and Guided Meditations and all the rest in between to YouTube Music.

YouTube. That’s the Hub’s music miracle. He loves to research the musicians and listen to interviews and variations of songs. He’s found new music like Mean Mary and can tell you who does the best covers of Stevie Ray Vaughn. I consented and agreed to transfer my music, feeling that desolation of a move again. Then came the glitches. On Google Play, I had order. I intentionally named my playlists in such a way that I categorized them by type but also alphabetically. YTM squished the lists together out of sequence and added the Hub’s listening playlists from when he’s on my computer. Then, the playlists cut out on shuffle, so my background music shuts down randomly. I spent too much time trying to figure out a fix and drew the line at having to download an app.

That’s how I came to Amazon Music. It’s half the price of Google Play. The Hub can still do his thing on YouTube. I can, too, and no need to pay for YouTube Music. But I’m not advertising. Actually, I’m a bit disgruntled with all this wasted effort when I had the solution three technology advances ago. But what eased my troubles was finding a CD replacement that Google Play and YouTube did not have. Clannad. It was always first in my CD player. It heralded the moment I took a deep breath and felt the peace of home no matter where I was. Tonight, I set up a playlist of albums as if I were back in Montana…or Minnesota…or Idaho. I heard home play in my home…in Michigan for the first time. And I settled inside.

There is a radio station I still listen to regularly, though, and it’s not in my vehicle, but on my computer. WUMB. It has the kind of music the Current played in Minneapolis, and another station in Idaho. Out of Boston, I think of it as the music of the Northeast. I think of Vermont, the most rooted place and people I’ve experienced. Rooted music. And that is still the magic of radio. Despite all these technologies and arrangements, radio still connects people and place.

With great anticipation, I introduce ya’ll to the 2020 Flash Fiction Rodeo Playlist (on YouTube). I had lots of music memories and creative ideas swirling as I built this list. The first song is a masterpiece written for a Clint Eastwood movie by an Italian composer and artfully played by the Danish National Symphony. It vibrates with global imagination. The list includes classics, a few KKBC tunes, western movie songs, and some interesting modern manifestations in western music. Cowboy music has roots in many other nations and has a vibe shared by those venturing to frontiers. Maybe one day, someone will yodel a cattle call on Mars. Much of the music tells a story; other songs inspire stories. It’s the essence of our Rodeo contest season quickly approaching.

We have a great line up of Rodeo Leaders to host contests this year — Colleen Chesebro, Marsha Ingrao, Kerry E.B. Black, and the one and only Goldie. We all decided to stay with a western theme this year, yet you will be surprised, delighted, and challenged by what these Leaders have to offer in their contests. TUFF (The Ultimate Flash Fiction) returns this year, too, and will take over the stage at Saddle Up Saloon on Mondays. Contests will start every Tuesday in October, each ending before the next one launches. These contests allow writers to apply their skills and stretch their writing. The weekly challenges will continue on Thursday, with collections published on Wednesdays. Winners will be revealed on consecutive Tuesdays in November. One winner in each contest will win $25 and a digital trophy.

September 10, 2020, prompt: In 99 words (no more, no less), write a story that includes something heard on the radio. It can be from any station or era. What is heard? A song, announcement, ad? Think of how radion connects people and places. Go where the prompt leads!

Respond by September 15, 2020. Use the comment section below to share, read, and be social. You may leave a link, pingback, or story in the comments. If you want to be published in the weekly collection, please use the form.  Rules & Guidelines.

Submissions are now closed. See our latest challenge to enter.

Lost Daughter by Charli Mills

Clementine heard her mother over the Stockton radio. She’d entered the small house at the edge of farm fields, picking up fallen produce in the road. Harvest trucks left a trail, speeding to city markets. Her landlady called the rental the Road Garden. Clem thought she meant “rose” and was disappointed to find weeds and a weeping willow. Her mother played Rambler on the banjo and Clem recognized the Tennessee picking popular among California cowboys. She recognized her mother’s name but not her voice. One day, maybe she’d meet the woman who abandoned her for a life of music.

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103 Comments

    • Charli Mills

      You are one quick flasher, Reena! And what a chilling story. That’s going to stick with me.

      • Reena Saxena

        Thanks ??

    • Susan Zutautas

      I’d love to read part 2 too.

      • Reena Saxena

        Will attempt it soon 🙂

  1. D. Avery @shiftnshake

    “Pal, do you have a ipod?”
    “I don’t.”
    “Should git it.”
    “I won’t.”
    “Pal, we’re out here all the live long day, we should have a playlist fer when we work.”
    “Jist git ta work, Kid. Leave the singin’ ta the birds.”
    “D’ya yodel, Pal?”
    “Never.”
    “Knock, knock.”
    “Ah, jeez. Who’s there?”
    “Little Old Lady.”
    “Little Old Lady who?”
    “Gotcha ta yodel, Pal!”
    “Hmmf.”
    “S’pose all we need’s thet old radio in the bunkhouse, tuned to KROT. Weatherman says them high winds is slacked off. Says the skies are not cloudy all day.”
    “Sportscaster says the Rodeo’s comin’!”
    “Yeehaw!”

    • D. Avery @shiftnshake

      And the Ads Played On

      “Yep, KROTs a good station, plays jist what ya wanna hear when ya wanna hear it.”
      “How da they manage that, Pal?”
      “Reckon ‘cause they’s fictional, like us. Shush listen.”
      Come shift or shine ya don’t need no fancy wine but fer a real good time try Ernie’s Corn Juice! Ernie’s Corn Juice— dis still the one fer fallin’ down fun.
      “Ernie’s advertisin’ on KROT!”
      ‘Ello. Dees ees Pepe LeGume of LeGume’s Cleaning Services. For a clean that lingers, use LeGume’s.
      “Kid—”
      Frankie delivers da letters. Frankie, the mail carrier with an eye to quality.
      “Kid, iquit radio!”

      • Susan Zutautas

        LMAO! 🙂

      • Colleen M. Chesebro

        Ernie’s corn juice! OMG! I’m cracking up! LOL! Brilliant! 😀

      • Jules

        I got me some home made hooch… take the paint right off yer tractor!

    • Anne Goodwin (Annecdotist)

      Damn, my comment disappeared, but these two made me laugh.

      • Anne Goodwin (Annecdotist)

        Damn, it didn’t disappear, probably just hiding behind the Poet Tree.

      • D. Avery @shiftnshake

        The Poet Tree- where comments go to get away. Let your comments loose today! Specializing in buckaroo-ku, but always verse-atile.

      • Charli Mills

        Oh, Anne, I was already chuckling, then I read your sequence of comments and snort-laughed!

    • Charli Mills

      The fun and puns on the air! I love the Old Lady yodel — it works!

    • Jules

      KROT… I give Kid and Pal extra points for that! 😀
      I think the Boss should label her u-tube stuff KROT Carrot Ranch!
      Awe there’s already a station with those call letter outta Idaho!
      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/KORT_(AM)

    • Norah

      OMG This whole conversation is just hilarious. I’m agreeing with Susan, chuckling with Anne and snorting with Charli. Pal and Kid on the radio! How about a podcast? I’d subscribe. But, first, please tell me what KROT means.

      • D. Avery @shiftnshake

        Those are the radio station call letters, but local folks call it K-rot as in carrot.

      • Norah

        Thanks.

  2. joanne the geek

    Great post Charli. I really love music too, and my tastes are rather eclectic and range from country, folk, blues, experimental jazz, classical, rock, and alternative. I used to love listening to the radio as it would often keep me company, but these days I tend to listen to my iPod playlists more. As someone who has to move around a bit lately CDs can be bulky to transport, so I’ve put as much as I can on iTunes. I also subscribed to Google Play and was disheartened with their decision to close it down. I found I could downloaded the tracks I had bought a few years ago and added them to iTunes. I was just not interested in YouTube music and I try to avoid Amazon as much as I can…. I was reflecting recently how music doesn’t seem to make much impact in my stories, yet it is very important to me, I still find that odd.

    • Charli Mills

      Huh. You know, Joanne, I feel the same way but hadn’t really thought about it until you said it — music is very important to me, too and yet it doesn’t really feature or influence my writing. That is odd! I hadn’t intended to do a deep dive on music’s influence, but growing up with radio and albums (okay, 8-tracks) I always had music. I wonder what would have changed in my life had it been pre-radio and album days? Would I have had more of a desire to create music? Interesting to think about. Yeah, bummer about GooglePlay. My kids like Spotify and I had tried Pandora for a while. It is hard to drag around the CDs. I hope you and the CDs settle in a great place.

  3. D. Avery @shiftnshake

    Liked the images of harvesting spilled produce from the road, the action describes the character’s circumstances. This singing mother, do I recognize her from previous flashes?
    When I was in the Columbia Music club I ordered vinyl. If you stayed up late at night and fiddled with the AM stations sometimes it would catch a station from way far away. Once caught KKBC. Not really, but my parents had your dad’s albums.
    That’s a totally new Rodeo playlist! I’m checking it out now.
    I enjoy music and have listened to very little all summer. Too much else to listen to I suppose. And the nature channel doesn’t have news or ads.

    • Charli Mills

      This singing mother is on the fringes of something. What, I do not yet know. Of course, you would have ordered vinyl. I think the draw for 8-track was portability — we had 8-track players in our trucks. I got aa portable 8-track player that took all my earnings to fill with D-batteries, but I kid you not, I tied it to my saddlebags and rode with speakers blasting! I was not a cool 14-year-old.

      Tell me what you like on the new Rodeo list. I’m digging Colter Wall’s raw vibe and Kassi’s amazing vocals with that bass guitar doing bluesy things like a new era in western music.

      Nature channel needs no soundtrack (unless you have a portable 8-track and enough money for batteries).

      • D. Avery @shiftnshake

        I had that 8track player too, oh those batteries! Being far older than you I was soon bombing around in a Subaru coupe blessed with a cassette player.
        Am not near to wifi enough especially this week to give a thorough listen to the new list. The first sound track is a high bar, but when I can I’ll dig in to the latest. Dipped into it the other night but only briefly. Love Colter Wall, I found him on WUMB. Now, were I in that place I used to frequent in the fall, I’d be playing the Carrot Ranch soundtrack endlessly, but here I am.

    • Doug Jacquier

      A gem, Davery.

    • Charli Mills

      An unexpected ending that makes me think we shouldn’t have to wait that long to listen to our songs.

  4. denmaniacs4

    Radio Reboot

    “He finally bought it?”

    “Bloody miracle. Melania kept pounding away at ’em. Know what finally brought him around?”

    “No idea.”

    “The initials. DJT. She kept repeating FDR JFK DJT FDR JFK DJT.”

    “Seriously?”

    “Yup. Had him running around the bedroom chanting it. FDR JFK DJT. It was a hoot.”

    “And he’s willing to go to the next level?”

    “Bet your booties. Anything to get the geriatric vote back. And the younger demographic will be amused.”

    “Not quite a fireside chat.”

    “No, but ‘Tweet nothings from the Prez’ has a ring. Every radio station we can get. 7:00 am…sharp.”

    http://www.engleson.ca

    • D. Avery @shiftnshake

      Wait a minute… fact or fiction, Bill?

      • denmaniacs4

        There is a fine line…

    • Charli Mills

      Ha! Fact or fiction, I got an image I can’t erase.

      • denmaniacs4

        My apologies, Charli…I shouldn’t publish my nightmares…

    • Liz H

      “Tweet Nothings”
      Well said–I’m rolling on the floor here!

  5. D. Avery @shiftnshake

    Hey Boss, check this out:
    “Ooptional URL link to story”
    HEEHEEHEE! Punny errorists!

    • Jules

      I done saw that too and wundert jist how long it’d been like thet! 😀
      Thinkin’ meybe there oughta be an s… after the p 😉

    • Charli Mills

      Ha, ha! Oops! Smacked that silly extra “o” outta there!

    • Charli Mills

      You certainly captured the sound of old-time radio in your flash!

      • tylermdeal

        Thank you! I used to listen to old recordings of X Minus One all the time. I love how melodramatic those stories were.

    • Susan Zutautas

      Love that song. Still doesn’t make any sense to me but I do know all the words. 🙂

      • floridaborne

        That’s what I liked about the video. Once I saw it, the song was explained.

      • Susan Zutautas

        I went back and watched the videeo. Makes sense now. Thanks!

    • Charli Mills

      That’s a song that sticks with me, Joelle. I knew it was about the crash of Buddy Holly’s plane but I didn’t realize how much it also captured the struggles following that crash.

      • floridaborne

        It was a monument to its time.

    • suespitulnik

      Thank you for posting the video. I had never heard all the associations.

  6. Colleen M. Chesebro

    Brilliant! I’m so excited about the rodeo! I’ll be back tomorrow with my flash! ????

    • Charli Mills

      I’m really excited, too, Colleen! This Rodeo is going to burst out the gates with amazing challenges!

      • Colleen M. Chesebro

        I agree! It will be a fun event! ??

  7. Hugh W. Roberts

    What an excellent account of all your music memories, Charli. As I read it, it took me back to listening to Radio Luxembourg on a small transistor radio that ran on batteries that I begged not to die while I listened to the chart countdown from underneath the bedsheets.
    Now, the present day, music always helps inspire me to write any fiction. I’ll certainly be checking out the 2020 Flash Fiction Rodeo Playlist (on YouTube).
    I still have my playlists on iTunes, although when not writing fiction, I tend to listen to the radio (which plays all day in the house until early evening). As you rightly said in your post, music is magic.

    • Charli Mills

      Oh, yes, the hope for batteries to extend life! That’s such a vivid memory, Hugh and I can see it led you to a lifetime of music, too. I hope you enjoy the playlist! Let me know if something connects with you. I love Dolly Parton singing what was considered a man’s song, breaking down barriers. Yes, music is magic.

      • Hugh W. Roberts

        I certainly will, Charli. I’m back and have submitted my entry for this week’s challenge.
        Wishing you a wonderful week.

    • suespitulnik

      Interesting take Doug. It’s easy to understand from a young person’s point of view, the radio was at fault.

  8. Jules

    Charli,

    Your flash… It is sad to think that it could be true for so many. And yet there is a magic to music that once you understand it… it can take you as far as any book. I’ve tried to learn piano and violin… I’ve even sung in choirs… but I’m not musically inclined by any means so I went in a different direction in regards to media… with my flash haibun:

    Mixed Media

    Even those stations that attempt to bring us enjoyment often spouting that they are the best – this is the icing on the cake – we’ll take care of you, we’ve surgically removed all of the calories. A line we fall for too easily because we sometimes just really want to be fooled. We want what was, that simpler time forgetting the long list of woes each preceding decade has had to deal with. And yet we still seek that sugar rush. Looking for a sweet life wanting music that soothes.

    frosted, sugar, chilled?
    media complicates things
    with their bias views

    ©JP/dh

    • Anne Goodwin (Annecdotist)

      Love it Jules, but choir? You could join mine and nobody will hear you!

      • Jules

        I was in two choirs for a total of about 17 years…I do not miss the rehearsals. 🙂

      • Anne Goodwin (Annecdotist)

        Maybe because I was a non-singer for so many years, and because I’ve managed to find laid-back communities both in-room and latterly online, it’s become a passion for me. Might need to reassess where I’ve done seventeen years!

      • Jules

        When anything stops being fun – it’s time to let it go…
        🙂

    • D. Avery @shiftnshake

      Heckofahaibun. Yeah, sometimes hearing what you want to hear makes listening difficult.

  9. Anne Goodwin (Annecdotist)

    Gosh, Charli, you know how to make me feel old! I remember big and bulky reel to reel tape recorders – admittedly when I was old enough for one as a Christmas present we’d progressed to cassettes – and haven’t yet made the transition to streaming music.

    But I’ve got singing, a short story reading as well as flashfiction in my post – actually two FFs, one linked to each of my novels:

    IT HAD TO BE A SIGN is about how that creepy Cliff Richard song is responsible for my character thinking he could lock up a woman in a cellar.
    TRIGGERING THE HOWLING STAGE is about mental health.

    Heard on the radio (and on YouTube) https://annegoodwin.weebly.com/1/post/2020/09/heard-on-the-radio-and-on-youtube-flashfiction-and-singing.html

    • Jules

      I never got that involved with music as I moved around quite a bit.
      I still have some actual records. 78’s, 33’s and whatever the regular speed is. Our old unit went into the black hole of a repair shop so we ended up getting a new record player… but I’m fearful of breaking it.

      I’ve gotten used to the clock ticking instead of the radio – I had a good Jazz station a few years ago, but they went belly-up.

      • Anne Goodwin (Annecdotist)

        No 78s but I do still have a collection of 33s AND something to play them on!

      • Jules

        The tunes one can sing to are enjoyable 🙂
        I remember having one of those little portable square boxes for playing 33’s – I have no idea where it went – but I still have those little discs to put in the 33’s to allow it to go on a regular record player. 😀

    • D. Avery @shiftnshake

      Clever tie in with your characters! Perhaps some of them will show up for karaoke at the Saddle Up next week.

  10. Colleen M. Chesebro

    Ohhhh. I got excited when I saw the prompt. Here we go:

    “On the Radio”

    “Welcome to the Mercury Theatre on Air…” the voice echoed from the radio in the next room.

    Rosemary stayed at the sink. She scrubbed hard at a burned spot in the pan. It was her turn to wash the dishes. Meanwhile, her brother and parents relaxed at the table, sipping coffee after dinner.

    “…An unusual object has fallen on a farm in Grover’s Mill, New Jersey…” The radio sputtered with static.

    Grover’s Mill? That’s where I live! Rosemary felt fear.

    The announcer’s voice declared, “…It’s the War of the Worlds. Is there anybody out there?”

    The radio went silent.

      • Colleen M. Chesebro

        And… true according to the recording! Wowser!

      • Colleen M. Chesebro

        I added the actual recording of the War of the Worlds… the broadcast ended with “Is anyone out there?” Only silence was broadcast! How scary that must have been.

    • Anne Goodwin (Annecdotist)

      I’d forgotten about that, Colleen. Great take on the prompt.

      • Colleen M. Chesebro

        Thanks, Anne. It was the first thing that popped into my head. 😀

  11. Norah

    That’s almost a history of music and technology in the modern age right there. Well done, Charli Mills. I love that you and Hub were connected before you even met. Some would say you were meant to be. I had a quick squiz at the Rodeo playlist and am delighted to know so many you have included. I love the theme to The Good, The Bad and The Ugly. That’s an unmistakeable tune and takes me back to my younger (if not young) days. It’s perfect to open with. I look forward to hearing more about the contest this year and hope I can TUFFen up and maybe even enter some.

    • Norah

      I’m back with my response. Not really a story – didn’t get that far.
      https://wp.me/p3O5Jj-1Ep

      Tuning In
      On sheep and cattle stations in outback Queensland in the pre-television and digital era, when mail and groceries were delivered fortnightly, the party line telephone and radio linked families with the outside world.
      Mealtimes were scheduled to conclude with news broadcasts. The chatter and clatter ceased the moment chimes announced the start. Graziers inclined towards the radio, concentrating to extract words from the crackle, hopeful of positive stock reports, promising weather forecasts and news of world events.
      Unable to affect, but affected by, the situations reported, the graziers returned to the day’s tasks, hopeful of better news next report.

      • Doug Jacquier

        So familiar, Norah, reflecting my own early life in country Victoria and later Darwin. All talk was forbidden during two programs; the midday news and Blue Hills 😉

      • Norah

        Blue Hills! I’d forgotten about that, Doug. I’m not sure that I remember it, but I certainly remember of it.

      • Norah

        Thanks for the link. 🙂

      • D. Avery @shiftnshake

        It’s a great story. Seems like no matter the time or device, people are wanting good news and favorable forecasts.

      • Norah

        Yep. That’s what we want. It’s not always what we get.

  12. Chel Owens

    I love music, Charli, and know we have similar, varied, eclectic tastes! We don’t pay for music ’round here, either, so tend to have lists on YouTube and Spotify. I need it all organized someday so that I can play the cure for what I’m itching to hear, but it works for now.

    Also, I remember your promising a review or advice for those in the finalists last year. Didn’t one of mine make that cut?

  13. H.R.R. Gorman

    Music brings back memories for so many people. I’m not actually a “music for nostalgia” kind of person – for some reason it just doesn’t work that way for me. I enjoy the radio, and I’ll be very peeved when my disco station inevitably becomes something else (curse you, passage of time!), but it’s not something that moves my soul. Perhaps I’m weird.

    I’ve written a little post that’ll come up Tuesday, though!

  14. D. Avery @shiftnshake

    They pulled the door shut against the snow squall. “We made it.”
    He fumbled for a switch. “There’s still electricity.” Then the lights flickered out.
    “Not surprising in this storm, but look, there’s wood, and there’s coals glowing in the fireplace. The owner must have preheated the cabin for us.” He soon had a fire blazing. She spotted a battery-powered radio.
    *Roads becoming impassable.*
    “Radio works. Now for this lantern.”
    *Police have suspended their search for an escaped serial killer.*
    The lantern beam encircled them like a snare. Stepping from the shadowed edge of light, a silhouette took form.

    • suespitulnik

      Creepy, creepy. I wonder if they will survive.

  15. TanGental

    very poignant; I guess we’ve all had our in car radio moments, haven’t we. One memorable one was the Vet singing along to a lyric of ‘I am horny’ with ‘I am honey’. Much more like it, he says as a caring parent.
    Meanwhile the boys are cruising around the peninsula fiddling with the dial…
    Station To Station

    ‘Let’s have some music, Logan.’
    ‘There’s nothing worthwhile.’
    ‘That’s ridiculous. American has more stations than All India railways.’
    ‘But they’re vacuous. Not like Radio Three on the Beeb.’
    ‘You mean pretentious presenters widdling on about Bach’s innovative use of the semi-breve?’
    ‘Exactly. Better than some tight-trousered troubadour bemoaning his herpes.’
    ‘That’s your summation of a whole genre, is it? Go on…’
    *And now a word from our sponsors, Artic Deodorant…*
    ‘See, just bloody adverts…’
    ‘Shush, you may learn something…’
    *It may be winter outside, but it’s always August under your armpits. Freshen up…*
    ‘You’re right. Turn it off, Logan.’

    • Doug Jacquier

      Hilarious. Well done.

    • D. Avery @shiftnshake

      Ha! That’ll bring warmth and cheer to those Yoopers when the snow is flying. Just think of your pits!

      • TanGental

        I try not to think of them!

  16. reading journeys

    Hi Charli

    A great blog! I can “hear” the music & laughter!????

    Rather than a particular song, it was NPR that changed the type of music I listened to.
    It was a great intro to Classical & Jazz;

    And also, back in the 1970s/1980s — stories; humor and music:
    Garrison Keillor — ” A Prairie Home Companion” & the fictional Minnesota town Lake Wobegon. Unforgettable!

    And now – it’s mostly music from Amazon Prime :
    Still classical & jazz

    But also – how did I find “Badlands” by Eric Tingstad?
    And “Soul of a Mountain” – Jeff Gold.
    A lot of great guitar music!

    Mulling over the FF.

    Saifun

  17. suespitulnik

    Charli,
    I love the fact you and Hubs figured out you had a radio connection long before you met. Country music has always been my go-to and yes, the stations changed as my locations changed. Having now lived in the same place for 28 years, I have had the honor of getting to know “my morning DJ’s” in person.
    I tend to listen to a lot of Oldies via Google and Sirius. I like the music that has more words and less instrumentation, plus the memories the songs evoke. I plan to listen to the playlist you created for us in the next day or two.
    Michael and Tessa are on vacation this week so I can share a true story…

    True Radio Memory

    A phone call on a weeknight from my UPS driver son wasn’t a common thing. I asked, “What’s up?”
    “Every place I made a delivery today the ladies were crying about some DJ dying. Who was he and were you crying too?”
    “On my God, yes. Bill Coffey from WBEE dropped dead yesterday after the show. Terry and Billy told us this morning. We all cried together.”
    “Did you ever meet this guy?”
    “No, but I knew him well. Those DJ’s are my friends.”
    “They don’t know you.”
    “But I feel like I know them.”
    “I don’t get it.”

  18. Doug Jacquier

    I told you; the radio kills people. 😉

  19. Liz H

    “Tweet Nothings”
    Well said–I’m rolling on the floor here!

  20. Charli Mills

    Thanks, Donna.

  21. D. Avery @shiftnshake

    Haven’t heard that one in a long while.

  22. Charli Mills

    Thanks, Anita!

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