Define “media”

Salon – Bush’s softball team

Still not talking politics this year, but I’ll allow myself the occaional note on the media, or what passes for it today. And apparently what passes for it today is a right-wing activist misinterpreting Rush Limbaugh and using it to pose a “question” in a presidential news conference. And Bush called on this guy.

Folks, when I grew up, I listened to hysterical propaganda from Radio Moscow, Radio Havana and whatever the Nicaraguan station was called. (If you want something that takes “hysterical” to new heights, try Radio Tirana, which believed in the ’80s that every other country was attempting to invade Albania.) But I listened knowing that what I heard was garbage. I contented myself knowing that we didn’t do that stuff in this country. Between this news conference behavior and the money paid to columnists passing themselves off as journalists, we’re in the propaganda business now. Enjoy.

In case you don’t want to deal with Salon’s subscription-or-ad policy, here’s another take.

How irrelevant am I?

Let’s take a look at the area’s radio ratings. Here’s a quick annotation:

  1. WPGC, 95.5 – urban. Never listen to it.
  2. Magic 102.3 – also urban.
  3. WTOP AM/FM – news. OK, I check out the traffic on this.
  4. WGMS, 103.5 – classical. OK, every once in a while before I got XM. They do too much news at drive time, so it’s not that relaxing
  5. WASH, 97.1 – soft rock. No, not “adult contemporary.” This is soft rock, contemporary or not. Mostly crap.
  6. WMAL – AM talk, so it’s your typical spew.
  7. WJZW 105.9 – smooth jazz. They used to play it at the Red Cross outlet where I give blood, but not since they moved to a new location. Popular in other places where blood may be spilled, say, dentist’s offices.
  8. WHUR, 96.3 – owned by Howard U. but another “urban”
  9. WKYS, 93.9 – “urban contemporary”
  10. WMZQ, 98.7 – country. Seriously.
  11. WBIG, 100.3 – oldies. OK, we give this one some time at home.
  12. WIHT, 99.5 – used to be “Jammin’ 99.5,” which played a lot of Stevie Wonder, but it flipped to “rhythmic contemporary”
  13. WRQX, Mix 107.3 – “hot adult contemporary,” and FINALLY one of the stations to which we listen
  14. WJFK, 106.7 – talk, basically Stern (for now), the relocated formerly “Sports” Junkies, formerly the WHFS morning guys until they went Spanish
  15. WWDC, DC101 – yes, it’s a rock station! How far down the list are we?
  16. WARW, Arrow 94.7 – two in a row! It’s “classic rock,” and they’d been doing a nice job of modernizing the playlist while hiring some HFS refugees like Weasel and Cerphe. On the other hand, they kicked out several good DJs and replaced their likable morning show with the insufferable “Stevens and Medley.”
  17. WBZS/WBPS – Spanish
  18. WTEM – sports as of this ratings period, but they’re flipping to Air America. Good luck with that.
  19. WWZZ/WWVZ, Z104 – pretty good alt rock/”hot adult contemporary” from the Maryland burbs
  20. WHFS, 99.1 – legendary alternative station, just went Spanish and is apparently skyrocketing in recent ratings samples

After that, we hit the Christian station, a couple of Spanish stations, a couple of gospel stations and those who cling to 98Rock’s signal from Baltimore. They have a great morning show in Kirk, Mark and Lopez, except that the latter — a wonderfully cynical lefty news guy — is in terrible health.

So the basic point is that no one in this area listens to what I listen to. Except those with XM listening to Lucy, Fred, Ethel and Fine Tuning.

The good news — the lovably local WINC FM out in the foothills of Winchester, VA, is second in its market (and DC101 is third). So should I move out there? Well, the country station is first, so maybe not.

Conversations worth overhearing

As I walked across the parking lot today, I heard the following: “SOPHIA!!! (My head whirls, in part because I now know a Sophia. Turns out it’s a guy on a cell phone driving a Hummer with the window down) … I’M NOT … I’M … LOOK!!! YOU NEED TO LISTEN!! IF I DON’T GET THIS THROUGH, I’LL BE STUCK WITH A $30,000 BILL!!! … NO, YOU LISTEN … muffle muffle muffle”

(Apparently, he decided not to share the conversation with the parking lot any more. The window was rolled up.)