I run so many Radio Segments that it was bound to happen, a guest that for whatever reason cannot make the interview. My wife Jan will attest to the fact that about 25 minutes before we go to air I start to prowl. I cannot sit still. It matters not if I know the subject back to front, I prowl. At 15 minutes to launch I set up the show, 10 minutes to launch I am complaining to poor Jan “Where is this guy, I need my blood pressure meds” or words to that effect. Quite often my language is fairly colorful, but a couple of minutes later the guest dials in, and life is good.

Today was a little different, my landlord called, he was wondering if my step son could help him for a couple of hours. Not even the lure of money could persuade him that this was a great opportunity, I guess you are only 18 once, and spending time with your girlfriend supersedes the opportunity of earning a few extra dollars. Our landlord has been very good to us, so I offered my services, under the proviso that I had to be home in time for my radio show. I survived, even though the adventure involved the worlds biggest post hole digger. I have seen the gas powered ones that look like a jack hammer, but  I have never before seen ones on wheels, and needs three people to put it in the back of a truck!

I survived the adventure, and was home 90 minutes before the radio show. Bags of time to flesh out my list of questions. Yes folks, I always have a script, dead air is not an option. I have done hundreds of interviews, you always need a list of questions.

I was calm, more than usual, I guess a couple of hours with a machine out of a Discovery Channel episode of Mean Machines will do that to you.

With 15 minutes to go, I started the show up, at the 10 minute mark I muttered the usual comment of “OK guest, get punching those numbers on your phone”. At the five minute mark, well I am beginning to run through my fairly large vocabulary of cuss words, at three minutes, my wife asks the important question “so what happens if he doesn’t call in”?

I think about Jans question for about half a nano second, do I have a backup plan? The answer is no, but sort of.

The shows waits for no man, I give my regular lead in, and explain that we are still waiting for our guest. Jan is watching me with great interest, I buy some time by playing a track from their latest album. Jan asks me “so what are you going to do”?

I always like to view life from the glass half full side, rather than the glass half empty perspective. Having launched the show and still no sign of my guest, what do you do? Well my answer is to carry on. I am by no means a pack rat, but I certainly was happy that  I still had a whole bunch of 70’s Brit rock staged on the station.

So in the blink of an eye the show changed to a gentle rant about the state of the music world in the early 70’s. You can listen to the entire show here and get to listen to tracks by Wishbone Ash, Jock Bartley (Firefall), and Godley & Gouldman (10cc).

To quote from the very entertaining movie Road House “Expect the unexpected”, oh yes!

Simon Barrett


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