January 25th, 2014

caillebotte_man at his window

Bong, bong, bong

A few months ago I created an LJ feed for the L.A. Daily Mirror, a web site that has been around for a few years. Well, it's one of those things they call a bl*g, but I don't use the word bl*g, so I'll call it a web site. It started off as part of the Los Angeles Times but got kicked out because big media is crashing and burning and they couldn't afford it anymore. Now it's off on its own, like most of the Internets, and lost in the sea of... what is the Internets a sea of, anyway? Virtual and virtualized stuff, I suppose.

Anyway. it has a lot of posts about Los Angeles, mostly focusing on vanished scenes, famous crimes (solved and unsolved,) and old movies and movie history. But this year the site's webmaster, Larry Harnish, has been posting a daily assortment of radio shows from seventy years ago. I missed all of these shows when they first aired because, well, I wasn't born yet, but I remember episodes of most of them from a few years later, so I'm familiar with the characters and formats and such.

The shows are gleaned from the vast collections of the Internet Archive, and while I can always go to the Archive and fetch whatever old shows I want, I find it suitable to just listen to whatever Larry digs up. That's probably because that's how radio worked: you listened to whatever was on. Many people too young to remember radio shows of this sort remember when television was like that, before VCRs and TIVOs and Hoppers and whatever else newfangled they've got these days (I've still got plain old television, myself, even though I own two VCRs. I don't have either of them hooked up.) I don't listen to all of the shows linked, but it's a great nostalgia rush to hear a few now and then.

Most LiveJournalaks were born after radio had gone the way of... well, LJ, so probably won't experience any nostalgia, but, with a bit of imagination, there might be some virtual nostalgia involved. And anybody who lacks imagination probably isn't going to like radio shows anyway. They have no pictures! You have to imagine the visuals! Bonus for me: "audio only" puts minimal strain on my aging computer's limited resources (unlike those ritzy YouTube videos that keep stalling on me.)

So far I'm the only subscriber to the LJ feed, which would make me feel like a member of a very exclusive club were it not for the likelihood that lots LJ feeds probably have only one subscriber these days. That just makes me a member of a very sad club. Join, and be sad with me!

Note: For those who won't get it, this entry's title, Bong, bong, bong, is a reference to the NBC chimes which played on the hour and half hour. I remember them! That's how old I am! But guess what? There is a web site for them! That's how desperate the Internets are for content!