In that Orwellian year I moved out on my own with a crappy radio into a crappier apartment on 11th & San Salvador. It cost $200.00 a month and the shower was painted forest green. To hide the mold.
I’d sold my records, and stereo too, except the Dischord, which went later anyway when I was really desperate, and rather than try and explore the myriad of stations available to me, I stuck with one. During the week it was new wave. On the weekend, jazz.
The Rhythm Wave and The Creative Source.
At the ripe old age of nineteen I burned to hear the Wave so I could absorb the antithesis of the hardcore punk that had ruled me, and JC’s Jazz show so I could request Majestic Dance by Return To Forever. Very few other people were phoning so he’d actually answer. We developed a rapport and soon I was in the studio cutting a promo for him. Then creaming my pants whenever it played. Especially if my one stoner buddy was over. That went on for about six months until I lost the pad from too much partying and had to move back to the parents’. I’d intended to sign up for the broadcasting class that fall but never did.
Which probably prevented me from being a pitchman.
They call it Ground Zero now and the only time I ever tune in is to see if State is within three touchdowns of their opponent. Appropriate in that one drunken evening while stumbling through the quad I could have sworn I saw two dudes scurrying towards the window where the DJ booth was. One of them had a fire extinguisher in his hand. Both of them were chuckling. Then I heard a boom followed by the figures falling into the shadows, howling.
I didn’t know if I’d dreamed it til I rode by and saw the broken glass and crime scene tape strung the next day. But what I remember most vividly is that it didn’t bother me that it happened.
The blaze had burned out.