Thursday, August 23, 2007

Radio Hosts (plus a scary picture)

I don't know if this habit stems from anxiety due to my underemployment, the relatively loose structure of my days off, or just a weird restlessness of sleeping alone again, but I've been falling asleep listening to Coast To Coast AM regularly, if not every night, for a couple of weeks now. (Prior to this spell, I have listened to the show irregularly, or when I was aware of a particularly fascinating topic; for instance the nights they interview ghost hunters are always compelling.)

The show is now hosted by George Noory, because Art Bell decided to retire (again). His retirement (this time) is due to his having a new baby with whom he wants to spend more time. I was really concerned for what I would do with my late, sleepless nights because I never cared for George Noory as a weekend-and-guest to Art Bell's full-time host.

The transition has been nice though. George retains Art's polite, even enthusiastic, indulgence of what the sometimes specious theories and implausible anecdotes presented by callers and guests. He's also unlikely to try and make anyone uncomfortable, and, as I think I've mentioned, that makes his show's tone (frequently conversational, rarely confrontational) anomalous on either band, but the AM one in particular.

George does not cultivate the same intimacy Art did with his audience (Bell's shows could often include monologues about his cats, and one particularly wrenching show a couple years ago was about his wife's death) but my feeling is that this is because he is humble enough (because he is the show's inheritor rather than creator) that he does not presume the same kind of "ownership" over the show or audience.

A few nights ago, George alerted listeners to this photograph's presence on the website. It is, apparently, a picture (and some video) of a passenger jet being struck by lightening in Osaka, Japan. It is undated. The report is that nobody was harmed.

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