Saturday, May 03, 2008

Yogurt Monkey Sylvia Poggioli

So I've been in public radio full time for almost seven years now. And I get asked all the time how I got involved in something like that (people always add that emphasis because public radio = you so crazy). And it's kind of screwy, really. See, first I was an actor in Seattle. Then I was a frustrated bored actor who felt like he was wasting his time on dumb projects. Then I was that same actor who wrote plays.

Then Rewind came on the air. First local, then national, news satire on NPR, produced at KUOW, hosted by Bill Radke. Jill heard it, thought I should write for it. I said meh and did nothing about it. Andy Jensen heard it, was directing a play I wrote, thought the play could use some publicity, cold called Bill Radke pushing me as a comedy sketch writer, Bill called me, I started writing for the show. The reason: the money. Make no mistake. For every 3-5 minute sketch they bought, Rewind would send me $200. I could not believe it. So I wrote as many as I could and got a pretty good track record.

Later, I went to work for the show full time as a writer, then elbowed my way on to the air as a sort of correspondent and later a back up host. Then Rewind got canceled so I elbowed my way into the rest of KUOW as a producer and later on the air. Meanwhile, Bill decamped Seattle and went to LA to host what was to become Weekend America. I started freelancing for them, elbowing my way on to their airways and was later offered a full time job.

So how did I achieve this weekly national air time? Not journalism school, not internships: funny writing, stubborn persistence, and lots of sharp elbowing. And Bill Radke more or less.

So I knew baby was on the way this week and I knew my work week would be short. No time to report and file a story. So I pitched the idea, which was then accepted, of me writing a comedy sketch based on current events that Bill and I could do together. If you listen to this sketch and never had a chance to hear Rewind, well, you're listening to Rewind on Weekend America.

(whoever is the first to explain what the title of this posting has to do with the subject matter wins a free invisible theoretical Monkey Disaster t-shirt.)

2 comments:

Kate said...

I have no idea about the title. I do miss Rewind and was glad to hear you and Bill again.

bd said...

Purple Monkey Dishwasher?