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Radio 4 is precious

Since I was a child Radio 4 has kept me company on sick days. I still remember as a child under 10 listening to the news and hearing pretty much every hour about some famous person dying, I forget who.

I always loved the Today programme with its fast moving mix of topical stories. One day however a couple of years ago though I got fed up with it when they had a story near the end of the programme about a singing statue of Perry Como. Maybe it was just because I was unwell, but that was just a waste of my time hearing about it (not that I've got anything against Perry Como). So instead I spent the day listening to XFm and thinking that although it wasn't much fun being ill, listening to this lovely indie rock was not a bad way to spend the day when you're not up to anything else.

Last week I was ill again and Radio 4 came to the rescue. Coincidentally I've been reading Radio: A True Love Story by Libby Purves, about her career in radio. She concludes, talking about a day listening to talk radio (presumably Radio 4):
Yet all the time that my mind dwelt on stethoscopes, sisterhood, Hindu Theology and public affairs I was phsycially busy, travelling and dealing with the irritating minutiae of daily life. Music radio mught have soothed or invigorated me, and inane disk-jocky chat could have been some sort of ersatz "company". But what this neo-Reithian kind of radio did was actually to double the usefulness and value of that day in my life, making me laugh and think and mentally explore. It make the dull physical jobs tolerable, and fitted me better for the mental ones to come. It make me more alive.
What could be more precious? Or more worth fighting for?
Like she said.


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