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Live Audience

June 19, 2004

I went to see a radio show today. Yes, there is something not quite right there. It’s a radio show, meant to be listened to, not watched. But still, it was something I’d never done so off I went to Ann Arbor this morning to be part of the live audience for Whad’ya Know?. It’s one of the line-up of public radio shows I listen to when I’m home alone puttering around on Saturdays, like I am today, so I figured why not go see it in person while they were here. I waffled for a while because the tickets seemed a little pricey ($35 to $45), but at least they weren’t being sold through Ticketmaster, home of the $2.50 charge for e-mail delivery (on top of the “convenience fee” and service charge).

I’m glad I went, but I don’t plan to go the next time they’re in town. I thought maybe there’d be special features for the studio audience, like snacks or a warmup act or maybe a post show, but if there were those things I missed them. There did appear to be coffee in the lobby, but I don’t drink coffee so that didn’t do anything for me. There were nice plants and some goofy inflatable objects on stage, so there was more to look at than just people talking. It was kinda cool that Michael Feldman came and talked to the woman sitting three seats away from me, so I got a close look, but since he’s a radio personality and I’d never seen him before I didn’t have that “wow, there’s a celebrity” gawky feeling. The best part was the segment with the Zingerman’s guy, which led to a few baked goods being flung into the audience, but overall the experience didn’t thrill me.

I’m sure I’d have a better impression if I hadn’t been in a section with very poor acoustics. It was extremely hard to hear, which when you’re watching a radio program is rather important. It was even harder to hear over the noise of the people around me saying “what?” and their companions relating what they thought they’d heard. I finally gave up halfway through the show and went to stand in the back, which was full of refugees from the right side of section 1. A little before that, during what I think was a break but I’m not sure because there didn’t seem to be an “on air” light, someone in our section had yelled out “we can’t hear you! we want our money back!”. “Or at least the $10 premium we paid to be in the front section,” I added in my head.


A year ago, I was in Columbus for a quilt show instead of at the computer writing an entry.

Two years ago, I wasn’t running away from home.

L is for Live Audience

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