My radio broadcasting career began with a gift: a small, orange, transistor radio given to me by an aunt in the mid 1960’s. At first it was just one of many toys. But when I was 12 this little radio allowed me to make two life-altering discoveries - rock ’n ’roll radio and DX. My fascination with DXing - listening to distant radio stations – convinced we while I was still in high school to get behind the microphone too. Another gift, an LP record of Edward R. Murrow’s wartime broadcasts for CBS, created a strong preference for radio news. I am still learning and practicing the craft more than four decades on. I want to share this journey with you, along with a few side trips. I hope you enjoy the ride as much as I have.
Here you'll find some of my work as a radio journalist over the last four decades. It starts with my current employer: WMUK 102.1 FM, the public radio station at Western Michigan University in Kalamazoo, Michigan. You’ll also hear examples from my time at commercial stations in southwestern Michigan, and at an experimental, all-volunteer, “community” station I helped get on the air in Grand Rapids.
My aunt's gift of that little radio led to a life-long fascination with long-distance radio reception. The hobby is known as "DX-ing", after the telegrapher's old Morse code shorthand for distance. First on the mediumwave band (we Americans call it the "AM band") and later on shortwave, I chased stations around the world, large and small. Find out how much fun it was - and still is.
I've been interested in the night sky even longer than I've played with radios. For me, astronomy is an aesthetic rather than scientific experience. When the sun sets and withdraws the veil of daylight we stare into the void as the void stares back at us. That puts you in your place and impresses you with the wonder of the universe.
I've made a few forays into print journalism. Here you'll find some debris from my abortive newspaper days and some articles i published (or almost got published) over the years. Some are about radio, some are about airplanes, and some are not.
You can't live on radio and journalism alone. So here are some random thoughts about books, life, and anything else that comes to mind. Science fiction might make an appearance as well as my passion for history.