My day did not have the best of beginnings. I was rudely awoken at 3 a.m. by my neighbour, who was returning home after an all-night bender. He regards functional exhaust systems as optional equipment, so his hatchback sounds like the mountain coming to Mohammed. The evening’s revels had blunted his depth perception somewhat, and he needed several tries to get the car correctly aligned with his garage. It seems unlikely to me that anyone within a 500 metre radius of our flat could possibly have slept through that performance. May boils infest his gentleman parts!
I had difficulty getting back to sleep and I was dozing lightly an hour and a half later when my alarm went off and I had to drag myself off to the studio in town. En route, I saw that someone was making preparations for another fashion shoot on the lower slopes of Devil’s Peak. They were obviously going for the safari look, although the pine trees in the background rather ruin the ‘sweeping savannah’ effect. It was good to see that I wasn’t the only soul up before the sun.
I had a presenter-in-training sitting in with me this morning. In his day job, he’s an anaesthetist, so he is able to gauge levels of consciousness with accuracy. It is therefore not too surprising that he seemed concerned about having to learn from someone who (in all honesty) was more asleep than awake. I managed to allay his initial fears with the assurance that it was nothing a good dose of adrenalin and caffeine wouldn’t fix.
FMR’s setup is rather rudimentary and unlike commercial radio stations that have computerised studios, everything in ours is controlled manually. Consequently, there are enough buttons and controls to make a pilot of a 747 feel right at home. As the show proceeded and I continued my off-air explanatory litany (…and then you press this button…and then you push this slider up…and then you twist this knob, but only if that other button is down…), I could see that the new guy was having serious second thoughts. Live radio can be tough, even if you know that only your mother is listening (Hi Mom!) and cock-ups come with the territory, but it’s still loads of fun.