This Is Why I Can’t Have Nice Things

July 24, 2010 § 2 Comments

So there’s this radio station that was pretty popular when I was in high school. They played the only quality selection of alternative rock in the region. They got booted off the air in 2005 when I was a freshman in college leaving a genre-sized hole in the hearts of music lovers and soft-rock haters everywhere.

There are few things in life that I love more than good wine, good music, and good inspirational stories. The tale of the little alt-rock station that could fills the last two categories completely. The shafted DJs couldn’t let the music die, so they banded together and started broadcasting from a row-home basement and founded an Internet radio station that caught the attention of another local, on-the-airwaves radio station that purchased the broadcast, gave jobs to the DJs, and gave them some broadcasting time on the air for a few hours every Wednesday through Friday night.

When the nixed station first reincarnated on the Internet, lots of fans who cared about the music volunteered as DJs. Everyone loved the music. Everyone wanted to share. A lot of fans got to be a part of constructing something memorable, and it was inspirational magic. Flash-forward five years to July 2010. The local station that integrated the reformed alt-rock Internet station had some serious budget issues and had to let go several of the DJs who had been there since the beginning. The layoffs marked the end of a local broadcasting era. But the DJs with their passion for music couldn’t be stopped by a small set back like budget cuts. There’s another Internet station now, run by the people who had just finished their last shows days earlier.

I’ve been listening every day at work, and I’ve been feeling inspired. There are some new voices mixed in with the familiar ones – fans dedicated to the cause of great music, just like back then? That’s what I thought. A new era beginning with the same awesome magic as the old one. A seed began to grow in my inspired brain this week while I listened to novice radio voices spinning fantastic tunes and I sat in my office churning out the unremarkable cash advance articles that pay my bills every month. I could do this. I can volunteer to be a DJ, too! I got excited. Then I sent an e-mail.

I contacted the brains behind the operation on Tuesday afternoon. It sounded like a good idea after two glasses of wine and a morning spent at traffic court. “I’ve been listening since high school. I find your dedication to the music so inspiring. I’m passionate about music too, and I don’t have any experience and don’t know if you’re actually looking for anyone, but I’d really love to volunteer as a DJ for your new Internet radio endeavor!” This is probably the least formal cover letter I’ve ever sent to anyone.

A few days passed with no reply. I was flattering and honest! I got antsy and saw my dream dying. But I want to be a part of the magic! After a shitty week, a long day at work, a still empty inbox and a glass of post-work wine, Twitter looked pretty attractive. I can post one harmless and mostly anonymous comment! Keep in mind that I was anticipating a simple @reply in response: “Thanks for the tweet! We’ll have applications for novice DJs soon!” or “Sorry, this is a friends and family operation only!” Instead, I got the e-mail reply I’d been waiting for. My tweet reminded him. He said that in his e-mail. I forgot that I’m not as anonymous on Twitter as I think I am.

Turns out that due to a residentally-based location, this is a strictly friends operation right now. Thanks for the interest and the tweet, and we’ll keep you posted as things change. And now I feel like the biggest ass ever. I didn’t know that awkward situations could translate so tangibly through e-mail. I think this goes down in personal history as The Worst First Impression I’ve Ever Made for Something I Really, Really Wanted.

So now I’m totally embarrassed about the whole situation: Sending a fan letter, horning in on a friends-only operation, and fishing for a reply on Twitter even though I wasn’t trying to prompt an e-mail reply, I swear I wasn’t! And I think I made an irreparable ass of myself on the Internet in front of People Who Matter.

The moral of the story: Don’t send a fan letter after drinking half a bottle of wine and don’t drink and tweet.

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