Monday, December 11, 2006

i prefer not to air my dirty laundry on the radio

Having listened to LA radio for most of my life, I didn't realize how good I had it until I moved to DC. Sure, LA has its fair share of cheesy radio stations (like 102.7 KIIS FM), but it also has the best station in the country in 106.7 KROQ. KROQ has launched the careers of Carson Daly, Jimmy Kimmel, Adam Corolla, and Dr. Drew (and Ralph Garmon, I guess, if you know who he is) and is the home radio station for Loveline.

Unfortunately, the big wigs at KROQ refuse to offer the radio station online, so I was forced to find a different radio station to listen to when I moved away. I tried DC101 for awhile, but it wasn't 'real' rock all the time (Nickelback is not real rock). The other popular radio stations didn't really play the kind of music I'm into so I gave up on DC radio. I desperately needed something to listen to in the mornings as I was getting ready for work. For a while, I tried watching CNN before heading to work and found that I was constantly late because I was always getting sucked in to some news story. So one day, I decided to give DC morning radio a try and I tuned into Hot 99.5.

The current morning show team has been on for about a month now (the Hot Morning Mess was 'let go' in November). It hasn't been too bad, I must admit, but then again, I have low expectations. Sure, they play the same songs over and over in the morning (what radio station in DC doesn't?). For example, during a one week period it will not surprise me to hear Evanescence's "You only call me when you're sober" at 7:30 a.m. EVERY SINGLE DAY. And yes, the morning show does the usual radio gimmicky stuff. But there's one gimmick that never fails to disturb me. That gimmick is "The War of the Roses."

In "The War of the Roses," a listener writes in, lets the station know that he/she suspects that her significant other maybe be cheating. Kane, the morning show DJ will call the cheater pretending he is from a new internet flower company and offers the cheater a dozen roses for free to send to whoever he/she wants. So far, the cheater has bought it every time and lets Kane know who to send it to. Every time I've been around to listen to this, the cheater has chosen to send the roses to the woman he is cheating with. At that point, the person being cheated on (the 'cheatee'?) has an "A-HA, gotcha!" moment and confronts her cheating partner.

As someone who has been cheating on (and left very damaged by it), I hate this radio bit. Every time I hear it, it reminds me of Steve and Jeff and all the pain and anger that went along with their cheating. It's the pure, raw emotion of the cheatee that gets me every time. You become a live witness as shock, fury, and distress take over the cheatee. As a woman who's been there, my heart goes out to them. And it also makes me a very uncomfortable witness.

Meanwhile, the men try to talk their way out of it. "It's not what you think." "Let me explain." "This is your fault." "I'm trying to do the right thing." Ugh. Let me tell you, NONE of these words are comforting when you finally catch your lover cheating. I understand that this radio bit can actually be helpful to these women. But I fail to see how this is entertainment.

The entertainment value of this bit (if there is any) flew out the window on last week's War of the Roses as the cheatee found out that her boyfriend was cheating on her with a woman whom he ended up getting pregnant. Suddenly, this lecherous triangle has become a foursome, with an innocent child on the way. This story got became really tragic really quickly and I don't see how this can count as radio entertainment.

I know that I am extremely sensitive to the issue of cheating. But I wouldn't want to air my dirty laundry on the radio airwaves for (potentially) my friends and co-workers to hear. I'd prefer to keep my humiliation the same way I dealt with the cheating--private.


DCWeddingPhotog said...

99.5 sucks now that the morning team is gone. I can't even listen to it. And that rose thing is sooooo old. A radio station I used to listen to in Chicago did that many many years ago. Pathetic, huh?

PlanB said...

KROQ is totally online now my fellow OC girl. I don't know how I got through so many years without the Kevin and Bean, but you can now get your fix. On a side note, Jimmy Kimmel was on my plane (and snagged my seat) home from SoCal Christmas Day.