I am a creature of habit. I get up about the same time every day, have my tea, some porridge, and take the kids to school. I listen to NPR on the way in to work and, if I'm not feeling like news, KMFA for some gentle classical music.
I'm old. So what?
But this morning, after recently replacing my battery, I was reprogramming my radio, trying to remember what other radio stations I like. I was moving through the spectrum and for some reason got hit by a few words that caught my attention. The words
were "Ralph Ablenado." He was a policeman shot and killed during a 1978 traffic stop, a name familiar to all of us in this line of work.
The chap I was listening to, who'd said Ablenado's name, was a radio talk show host and anyone who knows me even a little can tell you that talk shows, be they radio or TV, drive me insane. I simply cannot bear to give any of my precious life minutes to some overpaid dude or dudette who thinks they know more about the world that everyone else, or who thinks their precious words will make one iota of difference in my life because. . . because why?
My dad is about the only man who has anything worth saying, and he speaks approximately three times a year.
Anyway, this talk show host turned out to be a fellow by the name of Sean Rima, hosting a show called "The Big Talker," which right there would have me running in the opposite direction. So this guy (and here he is) was discussing what I didn't even realize was a controversy: the putting up of a memorial to Ralph Ablanedo in the neighborhood where he was killed -- the city is doing this all over to honor all its slain officers, not just Officer Ablanedo.
Here's a story about the controversy, which I don't intend to get in the middle of (look at me avoiding controversial topics as usual!).
I just wanted to pass on that I heard some stuff coming out of this radio guy's mouth I've not heard in a long time (other than from politicians at election time): support for cops. This Rima chap, be he right or wrong on this issue, was unequivocal in his support for law enforcement, talking about how they put on their uniform every day and go stand between him and the bad guys.
He admitted that his view wasn't the norm for Austin (I gather he's lived here less than two years, whatever that may mean), and he said he's tired of hearing people automatically assume the worst about our cops. Which is a little how I feel, as you might imagine.
So I sat there, even after parking, listening to this talk show host. I did, and yes I'm admitting it. And I'm amazed to say I found him to be reasoned and even articulate (well, I wouldn't have sat there otherwise, now would I?)
I eventually turned him off because (a) I, myself, have some bad guys to go after, (b) my coffee was cooling, and (c) I was afraid he might start talking about baseball and ruin our first date.
Ah, you are wondering -- did I program him into my radio? Silly question: of course not, there's no way I'm going steady with a talk show.
But. . . I might just listen tomorrow morning to see what he has to say. A second date, as it were.