I always found it oddly appropriate that WRBH, The Reading Radio station, is located on Magazine Street. I guess we would be equally well placed on Story Street, or on any of the Muse streets like Calliope (epic poetry), Clio (history), or Melpomene (tragedy), or even Basin or Canal when we have those unexpected intense downpours on summer afternoons and the cars parked in front of the station need to be moved in a hurry or face being flooded. For a while there, we were definitely residing on No-Wireless-Internet street, but thankfully that issue has all been cleared up. I think the street we’re on suits us best, though, because I don’t think there is any address in New Orleans that receives more magazines than 3606 Magazine Street.
Which brings me to the point of this blog post: magazines are a huge percentage of what we read on the air, and also a major expenditure in our budget. There is a magazine subscription drive going on right now at WRBH, and it would be so wonderful if anyone reading this post would consider sponsoring a subscription or two. There’s a list of all the periodicals delivered via postman (and also via internet) on the mail table by the front door; in addition are some of the newspapers that are so vital to our schedule, such as the Wall Street Journal, The Sunday New York Times, and City Business. The Wall Street Journal at $324 per year may seem a bit steep, but considering how much of the Journal we use in a day, it’s a bargain. Along with the latest news and business information, the Journal provides us with articles for the travel program, book reviews, parenting and medical trends, in-depth editorials on music and films, and even helpful tips we can harvest for Good Advice. And if you need an added incentive to give a Wall Street Journal subscription, I’ll throw in a sponsor introduction just for you! At five o’clock every weekday, you’ll get to hear this special announcement: “Today’s broadcast of the Wall Street Journal is brought to you by a generous donation from Your Name Here.” This offer is only good for the Journal, and hurry, because it may not last long.
If you’re too shy to have your name on the air, don’t fret–there are plenty more subscriptions to choose from. So far our generous volunteers have donated money to sponsor The New Yorker, Art News, The Nation, Dog Fancy, Military History, Civil War Times, Vanity Fair, Time, People and Southern Living, but that’s just the tip of the iceberg for us. Still at large are biggies like Oprah, Newsweek, The Intelligent Optimist, Entertainment Weekly, and Good Housekeeping, all enjoyable, informative, and vastly entertaining reads. Ellery Queen, Alfred Hitchcock Mystery, Asimov’s Science Fiction, and Fantasy and Science Fiction are all still up for grabs, and as most of you know, they provide the majority of the material for our Monday and Thursday Mystery programs, along with the Wednesday Science Fiction Show.
There’s one more reason to donate a subscription, and I think this is the best and most generous reason of all: to give because of those individuals in the New Orleans area who may be confined to their homes because of vision problems, because of illness, because they have suffered a stroke or have a disability, or because they are advanced in age and depend on us to provide them with the information they need–in other words, those we serve in our mission. Our listeners are very grateful and appreciative people, by and large–they let us know often how thankful they are for your voices and the time you share with them. Give a gift to those you are reading to–please take the time to check the list by the front door, choose a subscription, and write a check for the amount to WRBH and we’ll put it in the magazine fund. You can even call the station (899-1144) and I’ll be happy to help you pick one over the phone (we also take credit cards.) It means a lot to WRBH, but even more to our listeners.