It looks like I might have to change the name of this blog. As of today, I'm no longer languishing on the scrapheap of the unemployed. Quite a mouthful. For the first time in six months, I spent part of the morning broadcasting traffic reports over three stations in the Beasley Broadcasting chain (for the record, KDWN, FRESH 102.7, AND 96.3 KKLZ). I think that it went alright, but I still felt like a newbie amongst the vets, the runt of the litter. If memory serves (and as I get older, that's not a sure thing), I've hated every job that I've had after the first day. The only thing that was worse than the first day of work was the anticipation of Day Two. But then Day Two would always go better than Day One and things would generally take care of themselves from there.
I'm glad that my first re-broadcast day was a Friday. This way, I can relax over the weekend and truly appreciate not just the days off (which when you're not working take on a whole different meaning), but be thankful that there are still people willing to take a chance on me. Even if you feel you didn't deserve to be fired, when it happens, your confidence takes a direct hit. It doesn't matter how many people say they can't believe you lost your job. That's nice to hear, but in the back of your mind- ok, front of mind, always- you're left wondering if you could ever get back what you lost.
My first few breaks were ok, just delivering the facts, and trying not to stumble through them. I kicked dirt on a few of the sponsor tags, but overall, I was happy to get in, get on and get out without sputtering like a '76 Pacer (GMC, not Indiana). I'd say the major difference thus far between Beasley and Clear Channel is that Beasley makes you feel like part of the team while Clear Channel makes you feel empty, like you're truly in a pointless endeavor, no matter how much you succeed. Everybody who has said "welcome" to me over the past week has made me feel truly that.
It was also nice to hear from several of my former colleagues, who were quite gracious in letting me know how happy they were that I was back. Those in radio not blinded by the corporate fog truly become like family, and even after a family member leaves you want them to succeed- even if they're working for the competition. I've seen a lot of people come and go and I always get a kick out of hearing where they are and what they're doing. There's never jealousy involved, only sincere admiration. It's a ridiculously tough business to do well in, and those that do are truly a rare breed.
I guess when I think of what I would've been doing had I not worked today (go to the gym, go grab a bite to eat, maybe play some nickels, maybe rent a movie)....I'd much rather have been working. I'm learning that the stress of working is nothing compared to the stress of life on the scrapheap.