Happy September! It’s my birthday month! I remember when I was a kid I felt like I owned the whole month because of my birthday. Now only celebrities can do that! (Vic Sotto levels?!)
The quarter of my life has long passed, with the celebration being memorable for all the wrong reasons. So to make my birthday this year a bit special, I’ll be posting about people, events, things that somehow make up a big part of me.
My very first brush with media was afternoons spent watching Hoy Gising!, the news program of Korina Sanchez and Ted Failon. I said I wanted to be like Korina. Many years and discoveries later, I came to fully accept that the camera and I do not have mutual feelings for each other; I found a much better and much loyal companion in pens and papers, and radio.
As a kid who grew up in the 90s, I was (and still am!) a certified child of pop. Digital players were hard to come by for a kid like me, so I relied a LOT on FM radio. The dial on mine rarely left Campus Radio 97.1 DWLSFM — yup, believe it or not kids, that station used to be halfway decent (not that I’m saying it’s not now, but it’s a far cry from what it was). I also frequented 93.9 KCFM and on Saturdays, 89 DMZ (the former is now known as iFM, the latter Wave 89.1).
It was only during around sophomore year in college that I came to appreciate radio talk shows. For the longest time, my belief was leave the talking to the AM band and let’s get on with the music. Mainstream as it was, Mo Twister’s radio show ‘Good Times with Mo’ on Magic 89.9 was what got me hooked to the station. Pretty soon, I found myself braving the side streets of Mandaluyong in a cab to get to the station and catch the last hour of Mo’s show live. I still vividly remember how Mo belted out the first line of the ‘Paulinian Mission Song’ upon seeing me and my friend donning the uniform. The station visits became extended stays — I was in the station from 6am to 12 noon. On a school day. What was I thinking?! (Oh, Boom and Suzy have a special mention in my college thesis. God knows how much they helped me survive!)
When waking up early became impossible for me, I turned to Boys Night Out for late-night entertainment. I don’t know exactly what made these three guys click for me; all I know was that they made sense and entertained my 20-year-old mind. I have so many stories about my adventures with Boys Night Out, and the favorite one I always tell was this one time they served alcohol to their guests and visitors. All the bars at The Fort were so hyped and they had some event promoters come over to the show. There were enough bottles of Bacardi and plastic cups to go around, and I left the booth stumbling, laughing, and fumbling my way to the elevator.
Over the years they’ve toned down their naughtiness and antics due to (ehem) a couple of KBP sanctions, but those didn’t make their show less great. I’m so happy to kick off my birthday month with a visit to the station that never felt strange to me. Despite a few renovations, being there still made me ‘feel at home’. The familiar faces, the hallways, waiting area, the office at the back — just making this entry made me so nostalgic and warm and fuzzy. :’)
It was Magic that broke my notion of radio’s mystery. They say DJs are easier to approach because they’re not really ‘celebrities’. They’re faceless to the thousands or millions who listen to them. But the game has changed and now anyone can easily recognize ‘the truth behind the booth’ (as Rico Robles of RX would say).
If you’re reading this and just beginning to discover the station, I highly encourage you to pay them a visit. They’ll love the company ‘coz the booth kind of gets cold, you know? 😉