To: National Public Radio (cc: Minnesota Public Radio)
From: Mitch Berg; not really a pollyanna
Re: The Season For The Wheezin’
Dear various PRs,
Last Thursday was Thanksgiving. And like every week after every Thanksgiving, I know what that means, especially vis-a-vis Public Radio programming.
To listen to your broadcasts, we are on the precipice of a national mental health plague, something Americans only survive with the aid of therapy, drinking or an endless slathering on of (wry, fashionable-understated) cynicism. A time of year where all ceremony is onerous, all family members are insane or intolerable, all travel is wearing, all human interaction is a layer of plastic fakery over a rotten, frothing core of anxiety and desperation.
That’s right – the Holiday season.
Public radio programming will be clogged with with newscasters droning on about seasonal mental health afflictions; with “entertainers” jabbering about the only kind of get-togethers any of them seem to have – ugly, dysfunctional ones; with obscure writers and artists elevated (?) to radio commentators, testifying to the ordeal we’re all about to go through.
Point taken, Public Radio – the upper-middle-class, over-miseducated, secular (wildly-disproportionally secular-jewish) crowd is exquisitely bored with the whole thing.
But might I suggest you poke your collective (heh) nose outside your Subaru-driving, Oberlin/Bard/Saint Olaf-educated, Whole-Foods-shopping, free-range-alpaca-wearing, urban-liberal-privilege-wallowing, Israel-divesting, coffee-shop-music-loving, prematurely gray, bumper-sticker-clad Obama-shilling bubble and take note that for a whole lot of people, perhaps the majority, the holidays aren’t about mindless personal drama, and bring us some measure of joy?
I mean, fine – you’ll joke about how pathetic you find it. That’s fine – and nothing new!
Just saying – perhaps you can put down the bottle and take your head out of the oven and look around a bit?
That is all.