1. Computing

Radio: One of America's Great Love Affairs

Opinion

By

This Valentine's Day while folks are sending cards, delivering flowers, and digesting the luscious insides of chocolate truffles, one long-lasting love affair should not be taken for granted.

The world's love affair with Radio.

Radio is the friend that never asks for anything in return. Radio is a companion that is always there - day and night - 24/7. It talks to you, entertains you, informs you, and at times has even saved lives. In return, all it asks is that you come back and spend time with it.

Radio's devotion to you is unconditional. You can listen to your favorite station or leave it flat and spend a week with your iPod. When you come back, it will pick up where you left off as if nothing happened. There are no hard feelings.

Radio reaches out to the lonely, the infirmed, and the misunderstood. It doesn't judge. It only accompanies.

Chances are you first began your love affair with Radio when you were a pre-teen or teenager. One day you discovered that this wonderful little device was very good at bringing you the music you liked most and your parents hated even more. What a delightful way to exert your individuality in a safe but assured way.

Radio was in your first car. On hot, summer nights when you drove around with your friends seeking peers to look at - or to be seen by. You turned it up loud and let it define who you were. Radio gave you confidence and sway.

I'll bet somewhere along the way there was a deejay or radio host who made a big impression on you. You probably listened to him or her almost everyday. You listened so much in fact, you were fairly sure you knew him or her quite well. And when they talked, you often felt like they were speaking directly to you. That is the real magic of Radio - its innate ability to be available to thousands or millions at once, yet personal enough to be of value to one person at a time.

You might have been in a natural disaster at one point when a hurricane, tornado, or blizzard compromised your safety. You might have been hurt, cut off, or alone. It was the radio that was your lifeline to information. And if you were lucky enough to have a cell phone then it was radio technology that allowed that phone to operate as you called for help.

No matter who else you meet, date, or marry, Radio looks the other way and remains true to you. Talk radio surrounds you with controversy and commentary to stimulate your thoughts. Music radio props up your spirits when you're driving in a bad rain with two kids in the back seat who are hungry and tired. NPR delights your brain.

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