An eye on the radio

Eric Auton

When I was a very little lad of about five, I often sat, cross-legged, in front of a mountain of a wireless.

Even when I stood up, the curved cabinet of walnut loomed over me. In its forehead a green light like a marble would glow and fade depending on the quality of the reception and transmission. Lilly Bolero came through the hessian cover, preceding the rich tones of a very, verily I say unto you in the Colonies announcer that ‘This was The BBC, London’.

“Bip,bip,bipbiiiip” announced Greenwich Mean Time. When I asked my father why the time was ‘mean’, he was a little rasping in his answer.

“Nothing mean about it whatsoever. London is the capital and world time is governed by London for the whole world….”

I thought the green eye was watching for anyone’s lack of punctuality. To this day, I feel unwell about being late.

But, ’for the world’. Yes. Time for all the world… and so much more.

The BBC was a unique and unquestioned source of reliable news for the world. My father’s business friends would often start their evening ‘snifters’ with a catch up of the news from the BBC, since local chappies  had no idea what was going on in other countries,which didn’t play football (not rugger) and couldn’t be trusted anyway.

So, we grew up in the security of being able to trust what news we heard from the BBC. There was no alternative: no competition and complete regularity and uniformity of presentation. We we’re living in a time of green light confidence and security.

I believe that radio studios might be using a red light to indicate they are ‘on the air’, nowadays. TV cameras and recorders announce that they have been called to act by the presence of a red light.

A fundamental difference, obviously but what else is different?

Perfect reception on a mobile from any broadcaster on the web!

Pause. Let’s think about how we choose to filter our news broadcasts, today. Are they ‘broad’ or are they governed by narrow political agendas?

If they are ‘casts’,then who are they trying to catch? How do we know whom to trust? I am unsure about the contemporary mass media so what is my yardstick? When do I say, ‘No thank you, very much’ or ‘that’s enough of that!’ Or ‘Save me!’

My faith tells me that Christ knows everything that I allow myself to absorb and that if He is sitting next to me His look of piteous sorrow will have me reaching for the remote control. He provides a forgiving filter..

I also know that He can undo the damage that is being done to our young people’s screen habits, if they come to Him in remorse and sincere regret and reach for His outstretched hand.

More Recent News

Karāpiro contract delayed

A contract to provide onsite management at Lake Karāpiro has been delayed four months because the timeframes are too tight. Waipā District Council, which owns the venue, had hoped to have a new contract in…

Singing for a supper

Rosetown Choristers members are fine tuning preparations for the group’s latest performance, before taking to the stage. Profits from the fundraising concert – Around The World in 80 Minutes – will be given to the…

Parents to discuss bullying

A public meeting called by parents of Te Awamutu College students is not designed to point the finger at anyone, organisers say. Instead, those behind it hope the gathering – planned for next Wednesday evening…

‘Affordable’ housing boost

Public housing Crown agency Kainga Ora will buy 1.4ha of land in Te Awamutu to develop affordable housing for people aged 55 years and over. The land at 1262 Cambridge Road, part of a 3.7ha…