The Power of TK

Write to Me:

See Also

100 Things About Me
The Bull's Testicles Project
Russia Trip: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5
Best of 2002: Movies, Books, Music.
Best of 2003: Movies.
Best of 2004: Movies, Books.
Best of 2005: Theater, Books.
Best of 2006: Theater, Books, Television.


Other Sites

My Slate archive
Day job podcasts
YST Movie Madness
Weblog Commenting and Trackback by

Saturday, September 28, 2002

Today’s Morning Edition had a brief feature about the BBC Shipping Forecast, one of those quaint and goofy Anglicisms Americans are fascinated by. I must say, I find the shipping forecast pretty damned fascinating myself. How can something so meaningless (to all but a few mariners, who surely have other ways of getting the information more efficiently these days) be so soothing?

(Funnily enough, NPR did what sounds like a very similar story four years ago. Not that there’s anything wrong with that. Although you can find old NPR stories online, I think listeners are glad to get a second chance to hear about interesting topics, and I guess the met report counts as “interesting.”)

Two cool literary appearances of the shipping forecast:

The shipping forecast is one of the world’s most efficient sleep aids. These days I often drift to sleep listening to the radio (with an earplug; I’m a considerate sort), but my choices are usually either sports radio or KUOW’s late-night offerings. I’ve noticed that shows I’m actually interested in (Sunday night’s Alternative Radio or The Diane Rehm Show on Friday nights) put me to sleep quicker than programs that I’m using as mere background noise. If I start on a Diane Rehm Show I want to stick with it to the finish so I can hear my pal Karen, who’s one of the show’s board ops, get a shout-out, but I can hardly remember managing that.