This past Saturday I found myself on the campus of Mississippi State University at a tailgate prior to the Mississippi State/Georgia football game. I’m a multitasking superstar, so I managed to drink beer, watch football, and roll airchecks on stations in the Starkville, MS area (part of the Columbus, MS market) simultaneously.
I did my best to be subtle about the aircheck recording — most people I’ve encountered don’t understand why I’d want to record radio stations on antiquated cassette tapes, and it tends to spawn lots of questions. Explaining the hunt for legal IDs is even more of a puzzler, though it does allow me to mention this website in casual conversation. Usually that’s enough to finally quiet the inquisition. But I wanted to watch the Alabama/Arkansas game in peace, not play 20 questions about airchecking.
My subtlety worked for a while, but finally my luck ran out. An older woman who came into the RV to cool off (it was 90+ degrees that day) saw me scribbling down some information on the piece of paper that I brought with me containing notes on what stations I needed to record. Seconds before I had flipped over the tape in my Sony CFD-S01 to roll on another station from :30 after the hour through :15 past the top of the hour — typically my best bet for catching an ID on a 45-minute-a-side tape. She didn’t see the radio, which was tucked cleverly between the couch-like seat I was sitting on and the driver’s chair, but she saw me making notes on my paper, trying to be inconspicuous. Her question caught me off-guard: “Are you a bookie?”
Now, to be clear, I love sports (if you need evidence of this, visit DraftKing.com), and I’ve legally bet on sports before in Vegas. But I was simply making a note on what station I was recording; I wasn’t tracking over/unders or point spreads. As you might imagine, I didn’t feel like going through the explanation process on what exactly I was doing. So I just narrowed my eyes and said, in a mysterious tone, “No, I’m not a bookie.” That was enough to quell her interest, and perhaps make her wonder whether I was telling the truth. But it was amusing to me; that was the first time I’d ever been asked that question.
The trip itself was fun: Mississippi State beat Georgia in Starkville for the first time since 1951, I caught up with friends and friends-of-friends, and I saw some great football games on TV leading up to the sold-out Miss. State/Georgia night game that I witnessed in person. Good times all around.
So, with that in mind, I have a few IDs recorded from this past weekend to share with you tonight here on Toppy, including the first-ever ID on this site of 104.5 WQJB. Check those out in the Columbus, MS folder. In addition, I have a new offering that I pulled in during the trip from the adjacent Tuscaloosa, AL market. I also moved a WZBQ legal ID that I recorded several years ago into the Tuscaloosa folder, which is where it really belongs.
Finally, I added a pair of AM legal IDs that I recorded during my trip earlier this month to New Orleans for you to enjoy. I have plenty more from there to share with you on here in upcoming weeks, along with more material from Mississippi and parts beyond.